By Lauren Weaver, Texas A&M Intern
Edited by Andi Champion, CHEF
Trying to keep on track with your health goals while juggling your family’s schedule can seem like an impossible task. By the time everyone is home for the day, cooking a full meal is the last thing anyone wants to do. For many of us, home-cooked meals fall by the wayside, often replaced with eating out which is expensive and not nearly as nutritious. The good news is, there’s a solution that can save you so much time and money –meal prepping!
What is Meal Prepping?
Basically, meal prepping is just preparing your meals ahead of time. It’s efficient because everything is being done at once, so it can be a huge time-saver.
You can prep as few or as many meals and ingredients as your family needs. If you just want to prep breakfast and lunch to save time in the mornings, you can do that. Or if you don’t want to have to come home and cook, you can just make dinners. You can even prep part of a meal such as pre-chopping the vegetables or pre-cooking grains or protein so that there’s less to do when you get home.
- Pick your recipes the weekend before you need them.
- Make your grocery list. Try not to overbuy – if two recipes call for half an onion, try to note that and just buy one.
- Head to the store. This is where you can save a lot of your time because you get all your grocery shopping done at once.
- Get prepping! Casseroles, muffins, one-pot dishes, quiches, breakfast burritos, soups, and sandwich fillings are just some of the many dishes that make well ahead of time and can even be frozen. Don’t forget to take advantage of different preparation methods in the kitchen. That way you can have soup on the stove, while vegetables are roasting in the oven, while you mix up muffin dough on the counter.
One last tip: Meal prepping is a great way to get the entire family engaged in the kitchen. With so many foods being prepared, there’s a job for everyone and it helps you get it all done even faster!