Meal planning can make or break a lifestyle change– whether you’re trying to lose weight or just heat more healthy. Food Prep is the process of preparing parts of meals ahead of time so that it won’t take so long later. There’s a health trend that’s been popping up lately: choosing one day out of the week to prep parts of your meals for the whole week.
One of my favorite blogs, The Lean Green Bean, posts weekly “Sunday Food Prep Inspirations”. The point of Sunday (or Saturday, Monday, Tuesday etc whichever works best for you) Food Prep is that you knock out most of the “dirty” work, so that when mealtime comes you just have to throw things together for a tasty and healthy meal.
They are filled with great tips and ideas on what to cook ahead of time to save you time and energy during the week. This has really caught on and has helped a ton of people eat healthier, with less stress!
I finally decided that I wanted to take part in weekly meal prep. I chose Sunday, because I usually go grocery shopping on Sunday mornings.
I made brown rice, shredded carrots, and chopped bell pepper to throw into a fried rice, which I made today. I also cut carrots and made avocado hummus for lunches. I chopped lettuce, bell peppers, drained and rinsed black beans, defrosted corn, and diced cucumber. I also sauteed two zucchinis which I had in my fridge that were almost to their discard point, so I Julienned them into noodles and sauteed them, made the perfect addition to to the top of the salad. I made cilantro lime dressing with Greek yogurt for the salad, hard boiled eggs and pre-portioned my Greek yogurt for breakfast! It has made such a difference this week already.
One thing that did turn out pretty well, at least for the first two days, was the avocado hummus. I put an avocado, 1 can of chickpeas, 1 jalapeno, 1/4 cup cilantro, and 2 Tablespoons of lime juice in my food processor and blended until smooth. It was pretty tasty, but after two or so days the avocado turned brown and it looked a little weird. It was delicious, but it needs to be eaten within the first day or two of making :)
I made this Southwestern salad with cilantro lime dressing for dinner Sunday and Monday night, and it was so easy to pull everything out of the fridge already diced, chopped and washed.
It was pretty tasty! I am going to need to work on my cilantro lime dressing, I got the recipe off Pinterest and it was a little sour and cilantro-overwhelming. That’s what cooking is all about though.. trial and error…
This is the fried rice that I made today– just sauteed garlic, bell pepper and carrot in sesame oil, took my pre-cooked brown rice out of the fridge, dumped it in, added some peas, eggs and low sodium soy sauce, and dinner was ready in less than 10 minutes!
I plan to continue to meal plan and prep my food weekly, as it’s already helped me so much this week! I will try to post updates each week of what I prep.
Have you ever prepped your food before?
Hi! I’m Emily, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and self-taught intuitive chef. I firmly believe that cooking is the simplest and most important step we can take to improve our minds and bodies and build healthier communities. Join me and let’s bring food back to the kitchen!