Meal prepping 😊!!! Where to start? What an awesome way to be healthy and have some meals on the go if your super busy, right?! Meal prepping always seemed like a ton of work to do each week. It didn’t sound like you could meal prep tasty meals and that almost all the meals would be boring and flavorless.
I used to get my meal prepping out of the way by buying all those “healthy” frozen dinners that never seemed to keep you full for more than 2 minutes after you ate it. The frozen dinners were cheap, quick, tasted great, and super easy to buy and stuff in the freezer! Needless to say, there wasn’t any dishes nor did it take any time to prepare. How wonderful!
NOT, in the early stages of my food journaling I started to log these very wonderful and healthy meals, when I realized how gross they really are for you! I mean, they are loaded in sodium, carbs, and sugars! Who would’ve thunk it, with their healthy labels, vegetables, and green things on the cover of each meal?
Meal prepping is also super awesome if you are traveling or on vacation! Prior to my meal prepping, I used to become very sick after about 3 days on a vacation because I was indulging on everything in sight and eating out for every meal! And when I became sick I became cranky! The remainder of vacation was usually a struggle getting through the day with an upset stomach.
In the wake of learning the sad news of how I wanted to be healthy and would have to find another way, I dropped these off my grocery list! IT WAS TIME TO MEAL PREP! I was hardly excited for this so I wanted to find the quickest and easiest solution.
So for starters I actually break my week up, meal prepping 2 days in a week. I will cook food for Monday to Thursday and cook again for Friday to Sunday. I do this because for one reason, you don’t want the food to get an old taste in your mouth from eating it for 6-7 days in a row. And we also need to switch up what we are eating to ensure our body is receiving all the nutrients from different foods.
Why Meal Prep
• You won’t need to eat out at much
• Cheaper because you are not going out to eat as much
• It is a great option for always being on the go.
• You’re eating healthy and getting the nutrients your body needs
• Its good whole food, instead of processed junk
• Helps you to be healthier and hit your health goals
• It’s great to prepare food for vacations (store meals in mason jars to save space). Save you a lot of heat burn and money instead of stopping at fast food places or going out to eat!
Meal Prepping Quickly On A Budge
To keep it simple, quick, with an easy clean up, look for quick meals, meals with few ingredients, casseroles, and slow cooker meals. Finding short listed recipes also helps maintain a tight budget, while still eating healthy! These recipes require little work and effort.
Check out the frozen section first in the grocery store! These items are usually cheaper and then you don’t have to spend time chopping up produce because frozen usually comes chopped already!
30 Minute Meals – If you are making 3 meals for the week (breakfast, lunch, and dinner), with 30 minute meals, the only time spent in the kitchen would be an hour and a half! That is not long at all considering you can still make amazing dishes in that little of time. Most of these recipes require few ingredients, so you can still stick to a tight budget, all while eating healthy and keeping cooking to a minimum. Check out some recipes here.
Is 30 minutes still too long? Check out other techniques…
Slow Cooker/ Crock Pot Meals – This device is such a godsend. You don’t even have to be a good cook to make these meals! If you want a quick and easy meal to prepare for the week, use a slow cooker. Most recipes ask to dump all the ingredients into the crock pot and run it for 8 hours. My favorite time to do this is right before bed. So when I wake up, the food is ready to put into a container and go! Check out some recipes here.
Casseroles – You don’t have to be a cook either to create a delicious quick meal with casserole recipes. The basics to making a casserole is mixing all the ingredients into a large bowl and then spreading the mixture into a pan or glassware, and bake it. To keep it even simpler, look for 5 ingredient recipes. This is another effortless way to meal prep while on a budget. Check out some awesome recipes here.
5-Ingredient Recipes – This is a great option, especially if you have a tight budget. For 3 meals, that’s only 15 ingredients! And some of those ingredients may be used more than once, so you will spend less time shopping as well! 5 ingredient recipes are usually designed for a person on the go and can be cooked in less than 30 minutes each. If the recipes call for fruits or vegetables, check out the frozen section first! These items are usually cheaper and then you don’t have to spend time chopping up produce because frozen usually comes chopped already! Click here for 5 ingredient recipes for every meal, even desert!
Meal Prep In 15-Minutes
If you’re super busy or just lazy like me, you can still meal prep!
Breakfast – Ham and Egg Quiche
Switch up the type of vegetables you use and the flavor of ham to keep things interesting.
1 package of frozen chopped vegetables (peppers, onions, whatever your favorite omelet vegetable is)
1 package of sliced ham
Place 1 ham slice into 4 muffin tins. Whisk the eggs and mix in the vegetables. Pour the egg mixture into the muffin tins. Cook on 350 for 15minutes. Wahlah!
Lunch – Sausage and Seasoned Vegetables
Each week switch up the flavor of sausage and the type of mixed vegetables you have!
1 bag of frozen mixed vegetables (your favorite blend)
1 package of chicken sausage (I like turkey and chicken sausages)
1 container of dressing (my favorite dressing)
A bag of frozen vegetables usually serves 4. For the quickest results, divide the bag into 4 containers, drizzle over the vegetables a serving of your favorite dressing. Put 1 sausage into the same container. Wahlah! All you have to do is heat it up.
I usually put the vegetables and dressing on the stop top until hot. I then cook the sausages in my toaster oven. When everything is done, I add this to a container.
Dinner – 5 Ingredient Slow Cooker Recipe
Just find a new 5 ingredient slow cooker recipe each week!
1 can (46 ounces) V8 juice
2 packages (16 ounces each) frozen mixed vegetables
1 pound ground beef, cooked and drained
1 can (10 oz) condensed cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
2 teaspoons dried minced onion
Mix all the ingredients in your slow cooker. Put on high for 4-5 hours. And wahlah!
Meal Prepping Quickly On A Budget
Tuesday: I receive my Emeals weekly recipe list! Emeals is super awesome because they have all different types of eating plans (quick and healthy, low carb, paleo, vegan, etc.). I choose 6 meals from the list I receive (the recipe list from Emeals is actually created to cook for each day, but since we don’t have time for that, we only select a few).
I look for 6 different recipes to cook. The 6 meals are for 2 breakfast, 2 lunches, and 2 dinners (Monday to Thursday meals and Friday to Sunday meals) so that we can get all the nutrients from different foods and don’t get bored eating the same thing. When you are looking for meals you want to find 5-Ingredient recipes, 30 Minute Meals, Crock Pot Meals, and Casseroles. These are the quickest out there to prepare and cook with a little amount of effort!
Thursdays: I create my shopping list, then I order my groceries online and schedule when I want to pick them up! Oh how I love being busy, okay lazy. I have found grocery shopping online to be way more convenient, especially when a recipe calls for some funky healthy food I have never heard of and have no idea where to find it in the store. When you grocery shop online, there is no more getting your heels ran over by carts, getting stuck in an aisle because 2 people have lined their carts up next to each other, or waiting in long check out lines. It takes me less time and is cheaper to shop online, cutting gas bills, time to drive there and home, time to find all the items I need, etc. My favorite place to get groceries online is Woodmans! They have a huge selection of food so its easiest to get the cheapest!
Friday: On my way home from work, I pass the grocery store, so I pick up my groceries.
Sunday: In the evenings, I cook only my meals for Monday – Thursday. Friday morning is when I cook the remainder of the meals for weekend eating.
Monday: Before work, I just grab my precooked meals and throw them in my bag!
Meal prepping doesn’t have to be so daunting! Just keep it simple! It’s a great way to stay healthy!
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