If you’ve never done meal prepping before, it may seem scary at first, and somewhat unnecessary. A lot of people think it is something only gym rats like to do and can benefit from, when in reality, everyone can benefit from preparing meals in advance – especially if they have a busy life. If you’re always spending money on lunch at work, you could also make significant savings with meal prepping. And, if you have children, meal prepping will make everything much easier for you. If you don’t know how to get started or want to improve your meal prep routine, here are some hacks that you can try.
Get the Right Equipment
You first have to make sure that you invest in proper equipment – and don’t just head to Amazon. Instead, you should try to go to a supplier that sells equipment for professional kitchens. One of the best pieces of equipment you can buy for meal prepping is a large stockpot. You’ll be able to cook large quantities of meat, large stews, or prepare large portions of sides like mashed potatoes or rice. You also need to get yourself a professional scale so you can measure portions of meat and other ingredients correctly. Also, make sure that you get good containers. Get yourself some airtight bento boxes that can go both in the freezer and the microwave. They should be dishwasher safe if you use a dishwasher as well.
Start Small and Simple
Before you start meal prepping all sorts of different meals, start with one dish and incorporate more of them into your rotation later. You also need to start with a solid template as it will help you get the foundation down.
If you’re looking for a good meal template, Ultimate Meal Plans can help. Their downloadable meal plan template is super easy to follow and will allow you to plan meals for every day of the week. You can start with only dinners first, then move to snacks, breakfast, and lunch after. Then you can start mixing and matching different recipes.
Use that Grill
If you own a grill and you love grilling, you should know that it could be your best friend for meal prepping. This is because you can use a large surface to cook large quantities of meat. You can even use the grill to cook stews in a Dutch oven, so if you are running out of space on your range, you can always use your grill as a backup.
Learn How to Use Your Slow Cooker
A slow cooker can also be extremely helpful if you like meal prepping. The best part about a slow cooker is that you can add all the ingredients in advance and set the timer. This is a very hands-off approach to meal prepping and will take a lot of stress out of it. This is an especially good option if you like stews.
Get a Rice Cooker
Single-use appliances often get a bad rap, but if you enjoy rice or things like quinoa as a side, you should think about investing in a rice cooker. A rice cooker is pretty much like a slow cooker, but for rice. All you need to do is put in the amount of rice you want and the recommended amount of water. This will get you a perfect batch of rice every time.
As you can see, there are tons of things that you can do to make meal prepping much less intimidating. We suggest that you start with baby steps, and keep things simple until you’ve mastered the art.