What to Include
The most basic way to think about meal prep is to include a Protein, Fat, and Carb in each meal that you make for yourself.
Example: Burrito Bowls
- Ground beef or chicken (Protein)
- Rice and red cabbage, peppers, or broccoli rice (Carb)
- Avocado (Fat)
How to Make it Work
- The most important thing is to find meals that you like to eat and are comfortable eating a few days in a row.
- I work on a 4 day rotation meaning that I eat the same meals Monday-Thursday and then I do a mini-meal prep on Thursday night for Friday-Sunday.
- Prep EVERYTHING…Not only do I prep my breakfast, lunch and dinner, but snacks as well. If I know that I’m having a rice cake or cup of grapes as a snack, then I portion and pack those for the week as well. The reason why it’s important to prep snacks is for accountability. If what you are supposed to eat for the day is already packed, then there are no excuses for going off the rails.
Tools for Making Meal Prep Easy!
1. CROCKPOT: This is the number one most helpful tool in my kitchen. Why do I love it? Because I can put some kind of protein in the crockpot overnight with my choice or marinade/sauce and wake up in the morning with a meal for the next 4 days.
Recipe! One of my favorite recipes is Korean BBQ pulled pork. I put 1-2 pork tenderloins in the crockpot with ½-1 bottle of Trader Joe’s Korean BBQ sauce. After cooking on low for 8-10 hours, I’ll shred with forks and throw over rice and broccoli slaw to make an easy Asian inspired meal.
2. Freezing meals in pre-portioned bags: If I know that I have a busy weekend coming up and can’t meal prep, then I’ll be sure to make some extra food and freeze into portions for future use. Again, this is where the crockpot comes in 🙂
3. Ground beef, lamb, chicken: One of the easier protein sources to make is ground beef or chicken. It takes a total of 10 minutes to brown and season this protein source. It can be easily used to burrito bowls or a Mediterranean inspired salad. What I love about this is that I can change up the flavor palette from meal to meal because this is a versatile protein source.
Recipe! Mediterranean Buddha Bowl: I’ll use ground lamb as my protein source and add it to a bowl with arugula, couscous (or any other grain: rice, farro, wheat berries), an additional vegetable (I love asparagus), and then two tablespoons of hummus and tzatziki sauce that will serve as my “dressing”!
4. Find your staple breakfast: Find an easy breakfast that you can eat every day. I start every single morning with an iced coffee protein shake. I make a cup of coffee at night and pop it in the fridge to combine with my favorite protein powder in the morning, which I drink on my drive to work. THEN about an hour later I eat an Oikos triple zero yogurt with ¼ cup of Bob’s Red Mill Muesli to give me a yogurt and granola vibe.
5. Food delivery service: If you are someone who doesn’t like to cook or have time to cook, then don’t stress because there are plenty of clean meal delivery services out there. I love to cook, so I don’t have too much experience with this, but I have tried both Kettlebell Kitchen and Ice Age Meals and they are excellent options where you can choose your meals for the week and have them delivered to your house.