Meal Prepping Tips
Time is always precious so cooking a few of your diet staples Sunday night is an effective way to decrease time spent during the week in the kitchen. If you are following a meal plan then you know exactly what you will need to prep, but if you are just trying to eat healthy and want to avoid the monotony of the same foods each day try making a grains, vegetables, and some proteins to set yourself on the right path leading into the week.
When meal prepping you need to remember that you are making foods that you do not intend to eat right away.Make sure the food you are prepping is not only delicious but also allows you the ability to versify your meals.Here are 5 meal prep cooking tricks to keep in mind.
- When prepping grains, use broth or tomato sauce instead of water.
Cooking grains ahead of time makes it easy to reheat for lunches or dinners. But, cooking them in water will make the flavor bland. Use low sodium chicken broth, bone broth or tomato sauce to increase the flavor. Not only will it make your grains taste better but in some cases even adds that extra protein to your meal.
- Roast chicken with the bone in and skin on.
When you buy chicken, buy the whole bird. Buying the whole bird is not only cheaper per pound but when you cook it with the bone in and skin on it helps prevent drying. When you are ready to reheat the chicken you can remove the skin and the chicken from the bone to avoid the added calories without losing the moisture of the meat.
*Extra bonus: if you want to take the bones out before cooking save them in a giant freezer bag and then when that bag is full use it to make your own broth! Might as well use what you already have instead of buying more things at the store!
- Foods that should always be in your kitchen
There are certain foods/spices that have long shelf lives that really up your cooking game. Most of us cook with olive oil; spend the extra money and buy a good olive oil because that taste will go a long way. You don’t have to use the expensive stuff to cook everything but use it for your salad dressings! Lemons can be squeezed on to pretty much anything to sharpen up the flavor. Stock up your spice cabinet!!! Having a wide variety of spices allows you to change up every meal. If you eat chicken for everything and want to avoid the boredom then spice it differently each time! *Bonus: if you have a garden or some space in front of a sunny window start your own fresh herb garden!
You are going to shop every week for your proteins and veggies but keep your cabinets stocked with a variety of grains (rice and oatmeal aren’t the only grains out there, get barley, faro, wild grains, millet, quinoa and many more!), spices, oils (there are different flavors to try out!) and lemons!
- Do not cook your fish more than a day in advance.
Technically fish is safe in the fridge up to 4 days. But no one wants that super fishy taste so to avoid this cook the day before or day of for the freshest taste! Not only will this taste better but it will also avoid your fridge smelling super fishy!
- Store sauces in different containers.
Keep your sauce separate! If you grill up a ton of chicken for the week, keep it plain!! Half way through the week you are going to want to change up the flavors and this allows you to do that. Eating the same exact thing for a week will get boring and you will start to hate it. Avoid hating your healthy food because that makes you just want to cheat on your diet! Do yourself a favor and keep everything separate (even your grains and veggies).
Dieting is not an easy task, so take these meal prepping tips and use them to help make your life a little easier. Having your food prepped for the week might suck that day you are doing it but it is worth it in the end because life gets in the way and you get busy. If your food isn’t ready it makes cheating seem that much easier. Prep your food and take the time to make it taste good!