If you lead a busy life you may often struggle to find time to cook healthy meals for yourself, or are too exhausted to do so when you do have the time. It’s understandable – cooking can be messy and time-consuming and resorting to easier methods of eating food is practically always an option. Many people have been trying to stop themselves from doing this and have turned toward meal prepping – making enough food in one cooking session so you can pack it away and have a meal for several days. While it can seem daunting at first with all of the food and plastic containers, there are plenty of things you can do in order to make it relatively quick and easy. Here are a few great meal prepping tips.
Make Your Kitchen Efficient
Since meal prepping can take a few hours, it’s important that you utilize your kitchen space in the most efficient way possible to make everything easy and less time-consuming. Get every appliance and tool you need out at the beginning of your meal prep in order to have it when you need it without having to dig for it.
Get Good Containers
You’re going to need something to store all this food in that will keep it fresh, so be sure to invest in proper food storage containers. You’ll want to get varying shapes and sizes in order to have what you need for practically any type of meal, and glass is often recommended if you’re looking for high-quality containers, though plastic is fine as well.
Use A Shopping List
One thing that can slow down the meal prep process is going to reach for that ingredient you need only to realize you don’t have it. This is where you’ll want to employ the use of some sort of grocery list so you can make sure you’re always getting what you need when you go grocery shopping. Some people will have a list hanging in their kitchen that they update as they run out of ingredients so they always know to get them once they’ve run out.
Use Your Weekends
Since meal prepping can take a few hours, it’s always best to do it whenever your weekend is. Starting the last day of the weekend before going back to work by prepping all of your food for the week is a great way of starting the week off with a fresh state of mind.
Keep Track of Recipes
It’s always good to have a good recipe recording system when meal prepping. Whether you prefer using technology or a traditional cookbook, there are so many great ways to make sure you never lose track of all the great meals you’ve made so you can make them again.
There are plenty of shortcuts you can take in order to make meal prep faster – things like pre-cut or frozen vegetables and other similar items are a great way to still have a fresh and healthy meal without spending countless hours in the kitchen.
If you’re the type to do one cooking task at a time, you’ll be cooking all day long. It’s important you properly utilize your time by multitasking during meal prep – if something is cooking on the stove, take that time to cut up the next ingredient, or get the oven heated up.
A great way to make sure you’re not spending too much time on your meal prep is by setting a timer in order to keep yourself on track. This is a common method used in many jobs to make sure employees aren’t spending too much time on a task, and it can help in the kitchen as well.
Ask For Help
Asking loved ones for help is always a great idea, whether they’re physically helping you meal prep or are just giving you tips and tricks as well as sharing recipes. If you’re meal prepping for you and your significant other, ask them to help out in order to speed things up and allow more free time for both of you.
Make It Fun
The most important thing of all is that meal prep and cooking, in general, should never feel like a chore – it should be an enjoyable experience. Turn on some music or listen to a podcast. Experiment with recipes. You’ll find that time flies by and you’ll have a week’s worth of healthy, delicious meals before you know it.