Meal Prep, or the process of making large volumes of food to be consumed throughout a given period in the future, can seem overwhelming and possibly inconvenient to some. However, it can be a huge time saver and catalyst for a healthier lifestyle as it grants you less overall prep time throughout the week and complete control over the food that you’re consuming.
If you’re thinking about beginning a meal prepping regiment yourself, here are some of the tips and advice that I wish I had before my first few times doing it.
Convert Your Favorite Recipes to Weight
Most recipes that you’ve seen commonly use volume measurements to tell you how much of an ingredient to use. For instance, one cup is an example of a volume measurement because the ingredient is defined by how much surface area it takes up rather than the weight of the ingredient you’re putting in.
This is fine when doing a small batch, but when doing a large one, weight measurements are essential. They basically allow you to place a bowl or container on a scale, dump in the given ingredient until you hit the weight, and move on. No more fuss with trying to get accurate scoops or measurements. Everything in the recipe is in the same exact unit which also makes it easy to double, triple, or quadruple the recipe if you want to make more.
Make Trays Consistent by Calories
Because we live in a society with an abundance of food, it can be easy to overeat. We can’t help but feel compelled to always chow down when we’re presented with super-sized portions in front of us. Making each of your prepped meals measure up to suit your specific caloric needs brings a whole level of mindfulness to eating rather than just eating any amount of food until you’re completely stuffed. In addition, this will help on the budget side of things as you’ll only be eating what you need.
Don’t Forget Dessert
Having a nicely-portioned plant based whole-foods dessert will give you something to look forward to without feeling guilty. You’ll know that you’re going to be eating healthy ingredients at a reasonable portion while still satisfying your sweet tooth. This goes a long way to prevent feeling deprived of food.
Here’s an example of a great plant-based dessert that can actually double as a pre-workout snack. In order to make a large serving – just follow these simple steps:
- Follow the recipe exactly making a test batch – while doing this – weigh each ingredient in grams.
- Roll them out into 15 balls as instructed in the recipe
- Next time, multiply the gram weights by whatever you like to make a huge batch!
- You can also use these weights to calculate the overall nutrition facts per ball.
Invest in the Right Equipment and Vessels
There are a few key items in the kitchen that make meal prep way easier:
For proper meal prep, you can’t just invest in any piece of Tupperware. Make sure you have a large amount (at least 15 or more) of the same size vessels or trays.
A Big Enough Freezer:
If you want to maximize your time, it makes sense to build up an “inventory” of prepped meals that you can freeze. Investing in additional freezer space if you don’t have enough room will make your life way easier.
The Right Kitchen Equipment:
Having the right kitchen equipment can save you a ton of time when it comes to doing large volumes of food. When doing a small recipe, you might be able to get away with making sauces in a personal blender such as a Nutribullet, but large volumes will require large blending containers with the right amount of power to get the job done. Take stock of the tools you use the most and see if there are any viable options that can get the job done quicker on a large scale.
Remember, that if you’re meal prepping the right way, any up-front investments you make will pay for them over time by reducing the amount of food you throw away and the amount of extra time that you don’t have to spend cooking.
We hope you’ve found these tips helpful. Best of luck on your meal prep journey!