how to meal prep: people chopping vegetables and getting ready for a meal

How to Meal Prep: 5 Tips and Tricks for Easy, Healthy Meals

How to meal prep. This can sometimes weigh heavily on people.

“What do I make for dinner? Do I have the ingredients I need? I can’t eat another salad for lunch.”

Have you said any of these things to yourself? Maybe you said them today. Either way, I’m here to help you with five simple tips and trick for how I meal prep healthy and delicious meals every week.

How to Meal Prep: 5 Tips and Tricks for Easy, Healthy Meals

1. Make a plan and then make a list

Coming from a person who is all about plans, lists and organization, this sounds like a no-brainer to me. But there are many, many people out there who never make a plan or a list. They head off to the grocery store hoping they’ll pick up everything they think they need, only to get home and realize they missed a huge chunk of ingredients.

Having a plan in place for what you want to make during the week {breakfast, lunch and dinner} will help you to easily break out what ingredients you will need.

how to meal plan with meal planning templates

Because I’ve been doing this for such a long time, I have a good system in place and typically just plan for dinner and utilizing leftovers for lunch. Breakfast, for me, typically consists of a protein rich shake and an early morning snack.

But for those of you who haven’t been doing this very long {and why you’re probably reading this article right now}, plan to use a meal planning template. The Deluxe Meal Plan has a great meal planning template that includes breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. Because honestly, snacks are suupper important!

how to meal prep with the deluxe meal plan

Then once you’ve figured out what it is you’re making, go through all of those recipes and create a grocery list on the back of that template. If you’re looking for something that makes this process even easier, again, the Deluxe Meal Plan has done the grocery list for you. No need to sift through recipes or write anything out. It’s all done for you. BOOM grocery shopping done!

2. What to prep

Have you ever thought you can’t meal prep because you just don’t have time to prep every single ingredient and meal in one day?

Yea, that’s not necessary.

Meal prep doesn’t have to mean having every single last thing portioned out into containers at the beginning of the week. It doesn’t mean spending hours on end Sunday afternoon getting it all done. Now, if you would feel better doing this, then by all means, do all of your prep right away.

But the way I love to prep, and has made it less stressful for me, is to prep main ingredients at the beginning of the week.

how to meal prep big batches of grains and veggies

Make a big batch of grains that can be used in salads, as a breakfast {yes, quinoa totally works for breakfast} or as a replacement for rice.

Grill or bake chicken for salads or wraps. The best way to ensure you’ll actually use it all too, is to let it cool completely, dice it into bite size pieces. Then spray a baking sheet {that can fit in your freezer} and lay the chicken out. Cover and freeze overnight. Then you can place it in a Ziploc in the freezer and microwave to thaw. It’s like your homemade version of Tyson Grilled and Ready Chicken {and less preservatives}.

I also love to roast up a big batch of sweet potatoes. Just toss cubed sweet potatoes with olive oil and sea salt and bake at 425°F for about 25-30 minutes. I let them cool completely and then eat them on salads, as a side or again, breakfast {don’t knock it till you try it}.

Then during the week you can make up smaller pieces of your meals and use leftovers for lunch the next day.

3. Utilize leftovers in new ways

If you’re anything like Burken and me, you typically have leftovers. For some reason I always over-make recipes. But that’s honestly a good thing {unless it’s something I thought he was going to like and he didn’t…then I’m left to eat it all!}.

I always take lunch to work with me. It’s healthier and cheaper than buying a not-so-great salad from our cafeteria salad bar.

how to meal prep orange chicken in a bowl with quinoa

Sometimes I’ll just take exactly what we ate for dinner for lunch the next day. But other times I like to re-imagine the recipe into something new so that it doesn’t feel like I’m just eating leftovers.

Like turning leftover orange chicken into a yummy quesadilla. This is actually one of the recipes on the Deluxe Meal Plan, and it’s soo good!

4. Have easy portion containers at the ready

If you’re the type of person who wants to prep and portion everything at the beginning of the week, then it’s important to have enough containers to hold everything you need.

Having a mix of sizes will ensure you’ll have space for everything in your fridge.
containers full of food for how to meal prep
Bigger containers for salad {so that you can easily mix everything up}. Smaller containers for salad dressing {love shaking up my own salad dressing…super easy, trust me}. Medium containers for cooked grains and diced chicken {if you didn’t freeze it}.

I have a mix of glass and plastic so that if I make soup, I can heat that up the next day in the bowl. Or if I’m taking a salad to work, the plastic works just fine.

5. Switch up your weekly menu

Sometimes we can get stuck in a rut of making the same exact thing every single week. Then we get to the point of not wanting to make anything for lunch or dinner because we’re so bored with eating that same salad for lunch, or that same exact pork chop for dinner.

Instead, think up new recipes each week that will keep things interesting. When you have recipes to make that you’re excited about, you’ll be more likely to want to prep, make and eat them.

grilled shrimp salad in a bowl.

If this is something that’s making you cringe just thinking about having to do, then no worries. I’ve got you covered!

The Deluxe Meal Plan has four weeks of fun, healthy and easy-to-make recipes that will keep your weeknight rotation from ever becoming boring.

Every six months I release a new meal plan with over 80 delicious recipes, meal plan templates and grocery lists. Plus, once you pick up one meal plan, all future and past plans are sent directly to your inbox. It seriously can’t get any easier than that!

But, if that doesn’t excite you, then use all of these tips and tricks to make meal planning super simple. And just remember, food should be fun and flavorful.

Happy eating!

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Use these super simple tips and tricks to learn how to meal prep. If you struggle with meal prepping, this list will help you learn how to make meal prep really easy. #mealprepping #mealprep #easyrecipes #recipesformealprep

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