"Food prep" is planning, cooking, preparing your meals and snacks for the upcoming week. it is best to set aside a few hours on the weekend (or when you have the most time) to do your grocery shopping and then prepare your food.
Why you should food prep
Have you ever?
Ran out of the house without having breakfast?
been at work, starving, because you don't have a snack?
succumbed to the office 'snack foods' because you didn't bring anything?
had to grab last minute, unhealthy take out lunch?
arrive home, exhausted & hungry and realize there is 'nothing' for dinner?
Made unhealthy choices because you weren't prepared?
By having healthy food in the house with your meals all set, you will make healthier choices overall. There is no guessing and no snack attacks. it is a huge time savor and saves you the time/stress of cooking every single day. The more prepared you are, the more likely you will succeed.
HOW TO BATCH CooK:
4 Easy steps:
1. decide what meals and snacks you want to have
2. write out a grocery list of the foods/ingredients needed.
3. Grocery shop! Pick a certain day/time of the week that is your designated shopping day.
4. Decide on 1-2 days of the week & time Frame to meal prep
Keep it simple and plan out at least 1x lean protein, 1x veggie, 1x complex starch. Focus on "staple foods' that can be used in many different forms.
examples of staple foods: boneless skinless chicken breast, lean ground turkey, eggs, brown rice, sweet potato, asparagus, Broccoli.
write out your grocery list. Take inventory of your kitchen and pantry first so that you can get an accurate list.
EXTRa tip: make sure you are stocked up on glass containers to store your food in & also have a cooler! That way you are able to take your snacks and meals to go with ease. These are also healthier, non toxic ways to store your food. Avoid storing (and heating) your food in plastic or Tupperware, as these contain chemicals that negatively disrupt our hormones.
Once you get home, make a list of what you will be making and get started!
A great place to start
prepare 2 protein sources, 2 vegetables, 1x complex carb, and 1 snack.
a Sample week could be:
-Baked grilled chicken breast
-ground grass fed beef
-washed and cut (but kept raw) zucchini, bell peppers, onions and asparagus.
-protein banana muffins
-no bake superfood bites
Breakfast/snacks: hardboiled eggs, protein muffins, crustless egg quiche.
lunch: cold chicken/tuna salads, burrito bowls, turkey or chicken lettuce wraps
Dinner: baked fish with veggies. lentil or black bean pasta, turkey chili
BATCH PREP TIPS:
Prepare your protein sources in different ways. Most people want variety! My tip: Prepare half of your protein with a specific 'flavor' or way to compliment a certain dish, and leave the other half with a more general 'seasoning.' This way you have more variety within your meals and how you use your protein.
keep it separate. When you batch prep and keep each food in separate containers, you have the option to "Build your own meal" as the week goes on. This is especially helpful with families! You have the same base (protein and veggie) but then the carb/fat is optional. Combine and mix/match as needed!
Decide on a cut-off day. this is the time of the week when the food needs to be eaten or put in the freezer. Don't let your food go to waste! put your prepared meals in the freezer for the following days or weeks. This is great when you want to have meals ready in 5 minutes or less! Reheat for a few minutes and you've got dinner!
Hopefully these food tips are helpful for you and make your food prep process easier and more enjoyable!