Best Ways to Meal Prep to Save Time and Money in 2023
When living the life of a modern adult, nothing is more precious than your time. In this day and age, the regular hustle and bustle of life can get confusing and flustering. That is why we are always finding ways to save time and money throughout the week.
One thing that takes up a whole lot of our time and money is food. A proper diet is essential to a healthy life, which is why we need to pay close attention to it, especially in our adult life.
A great way to eat healthier while saving time and money is to prep your meals in advance. Prepping in advance means that you no longer have to think about what to eat for dinner when you get home or spend precious hours cooking a healthy meal for yourself after a long day’s work. Meal prep also allows you to save on money by reducing how many times you eat at a restaurant and giving you complete control over the type of ingredients going into your food.
In this article, we’ll be going through a couple of ways you can use meal prep to save time and money. If you’ve been looking to cut down on costs while also eating a healthier and more balanced diet, you’ve come to the right place. Keep reading to learn more.
Why Should You Prep Your Meals in Advance?
Prepping meals in advance offers a wide range of benefits from saving time and money, all the way to helping you lose weight. In this section, we’ll be going through just some of the benefits of meal prepping.
Time & Money Saver
One of the main benefits of prepping your meals in advance is the time and money you save. Have you ever had days where you don’t know what to eat for dinner and end up buying food from a restaurant because you simply don’t have time to cook?
By prepping your meals in advance, you won’t run into these problems anymore. Everything is thought out ahead of time, and depending on the recipes you made, all you have to do is heat it up and eat. This also saves you the time it takes to prepare meals every day, giving you more time to do other productive tasks throughout the day.
And since all your meals are set for the week, you don’t have to deal with buying food from restaurants anymore and spending your hard-earned money.
Take Full Control of Your Diet
Another advantage of meal prep is that you are in complete control of your diet. You not only get to choose what meals you’ll be eating throughout the week, but you also get to choose what ingredients go into them.
You decide everything when prepping your meals in advance. So, if you feel like you need more protein, you can simply add that into the recipe. Or, if you prefer a greener diet, then simply add more vegetables to your meals!
Prepping your meals is a great way to lose weight and feel healthier. A lot of people claim that meal prep helps them lose weight. As long as you’re putting in the proper ingredients in your recipes, it can be a great way to lose those extra pounds that have been bugging you.
Learn the Ropes of the Kitchen
One thing that we all eventually have to learn in our adult life is how to cook. Sadly, with the hustle and bustle of everyday life, many of us simply don’t have the time to do it. But by preparing meals in advance, you have a productive way to learn how to cook.
There are a lot of basic recipes out there that complete beginners can follow. So, if you don’t know anything about making a meal yourself, don’t worry! There are lots of recipes that you can cook with no knowledge of the kitchen at all.
And as time goes by, you’ll slowly find yourself much more comfortable cooking in your kitchen. From there, you can start preparing more and more complex recipes, which you can later show off to your friends and family!
If you’ve been looking to learn how to cook but don’t know where to start, meal prep could be the right choice for you. You can start with basic, easy-to-make dishes, and once you get the hang of things, you can begin making more complex meals that you will surely enjoy!
Tips on Meal Prepping to Save Time & Money
This section explains a couple of meal prep tips that you can use to have an easier and more convenient experience.
Prep A Week’s Meals in One Day
One of the biggest tips we can give you for meal prep is setting aside a whole day to make your food. This might sound like a lot of time, but considering how much time it will save you throughout the week, it’s very worth your while.
If you aren’t working on Saturdays and Sundays, you can reserve Sunday as your “meal prep day”. So, for most of the day, you’ll be prepping, cooking, and packaging recipes that you’re going to eat throughout the week. This will save you a lot of time deciding on lunch and dinner. Doing this can also save you money if you choose the right ingredients. Meal prep also allows you to cook in bulk, which is much more affordable in the long run.
Plan & Buy Ingredients in Advance
Before you even reach the day you set aside for cooking, make sure you’ve planned everything and have all the ingredients ready. Meal prep for first-timers can be pretty tricky, as you won’t entirely know what to cook for a whole week. However, like most things, with time and practice, it gets much more manageable.
So that you aren’t flustered when the time comes to cook, spend your week planning out what meals you’ll be eating on certain days. You can spread out three chicken meals for lunch throughout the week and have a vegetarian dinner. You can have beef for dinner on Wednesday and fish for lunch on Tuesday. The schedule is all up to you, which is one of the most significant benefits of cooking in advance.
Once you’ve figured out the meals you’ll eat throughout the week; the next step is to buy the ingredients. So, take out your notepad and list down EVERYTHING that you need for your recipes. That way, when you start cooking, you won’t have to make quick runs to the store to buy missing ingredients.
Choose the Right Recipes
Another crucial aspect of meal prep is choosing the right recipes to cook. Obviously, you won’t want to have too many complicated meals to cook in one day. That’s why it is best to keep things simple.
Don’t go for overly complicated recipes, as those will take too much time and go against the whole reason you started prepping meals in advance. Instead, choose simple recipes you enjoy eating and preparing. It’s best to choose ingredients that aren’t too expensive as well.
Everyone has different tastes and preferences, which is why you should tailor your menu to your tastes. That way, you enjoy every single meal that you prepare.
Cook All the Chicken At The Same Time
Another tip that can make things much faster and smoother in your kitchen is to cook chicken simultaneously. If you’re using an oven for your chicken recipes, you can separate one large baking pan into three. Do this with aluminum foil for the best results.
By doing that, you can save time and money as you can put up to six different chicken recipes in the oven at the same time! Ideally, you’d do this if you were cooking a lot of chicken meals. Instead of setting the oven and using a new baking sheet every time, you can cut costs and time by simply putting them all in at the same time!
Invest in The Right Containers
After you cook your food, it’s best to let it completely cool down before storing it. Since you want to consume these meals slowly throughout the week, it’s best to keep them in the refrigerator. To make sure you don’t end up ruining the meals you worked so hard on, make sure to invest in the proper containers.
Ideally, air-tight, BPA-free plastic containers would be the best fit for this task. It’s also best to get microwave and dishwasher safe containers. Having these containers will allow you to efficiently heat your meals up and wash the containers when finished.
And there you have it, a compilation of ways you can save time and money with meal prep.
Meal prep is something that a lot of people all over the world are doing. It allows them to spend more time throughout the week doing anything they want instead of wondering what to eat. And since you’re in complete control of what goes into your food, you can also save money by choosing more affordable ingredients and substitutes.
So, if you’ve been looking to make better use of your time and also save a bit of money, it might be prime time for you to start preparing your meals in advance!
*The information in this article is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical or nutritional advice. You are advised to consult your physician, nutrition or other qualified health provider before consuming any meal or beginning any dietary program.. The information is not intended to be relied upon for medical treatment, recommended diet or diagnosis. Reliance upon any opinion or advice provided is at your own risk