Master the art of efficient and effective meal planning with these practical tips and strategies.
When life gets busy, thinking, planning and shopping for the next meal can seem impossible. But there’s an easy way to eat healthy, reduce stress, and save money! Dive into the art of meal prep and learn simple step-by-step tips for healthy meal prep.
Cooking at home has been associated with healthier eating, including less sugar and excess calories, as well as increased fruit and vegetable consumption (1). Meal prep is an effective way to increase your healthy home cooked meals. It will help you save money, time, and take the extra stress out of your busy schedule. Here’s easy steps to simplify and master meal prep!
Planning ahead gives you time to choose healthier options, encouraging your health goals and contributing to more sustainable food practices. In the US alone, food waste has been estimated to be as high as 30-40% of the total food supply (2). One of the best ways to prevent food waste is to pre-plan meals and recipes for the week with an effective tool like Lifesum.
Batch cooking and easy sheet pan recipes will help you extend your ingredients even further. Check out some more inspiration for what to plan for healthy meals here: What to Cook When You Have No Time.
Set aside a time, at least once per week, to purchase the ingredients for the recipes you planned for. Once you pick your meals with Lifesum, then you can easily generate your own personal shopping list, simply by clicking on the shopping cart icon which is placed under each meal.
As a word of advice, try not to go shopping hungry. Even if you have planned meals and intentions of what to buy, your hungry body and mind may persuade you to grab more than you expected. If it's too difficult to make it to the store, place an order online! Some shops have a feature which lets you schedule staple items to be automatically reordered so you don’t have to remember to do it.
When you’re preparing and cooking your meals, there are techniques to save time and effort. Start with the food that takes the longest to cook and set a timer. Preheat the oven as you’re chopping vegetables. Once you pop the food in the oven, do some dishes and tidy your kitchen so you won’t have as much to do later. To boost your motivation to cook, associate it with something you like. Throw on your favorite tunes, have a series playing in the background, or encourage family or friends to join!
Invest in reusable containers so you can easily portion out and store your meals. Once your food is done, let it cool to room temp (if you cooked) and place it in portioned containers. Make sure to include a balance of ingredients and a big enough portion to keep you satisfied. Put it in the fridge and enjoy it for a meal during the coming days or pop it in the freezer to enjoy it in the next couple weeks.
You should be proud of yourself for making meals and treating yourself well! Add yummy seasonings to your dishes to keep them interesting and flavorful. Consider waiting to season them until you eat them to mix things up. For instance, by adding garlic powder and thyme, you can make a dish taste savory. Or spice it up with some pepper or chili. It’s up to you!
The most important thing to consider when meal prepping is what works best for you. Find a rhythm that works for your schedule and an eating plan that makes you feel your personal best. Lifesum is here to help! There are a wide range of recipes and meal plans available such as sugar-free, low carb, or clean eating. Not sure what to choose? Take our Health plan test to see what’s the best fit for you.
All of the content and media on Lifesum is created and published for information purposes only. It is not intended to be used as a substitute for medical advice or treatment. Users should always consult with a doctor or other health care professional for medical advice. If you have or think you are at risk of developing an eating disorder, do not use the Lifesum app and seek immediate medical help.