Master Your Dinner Prep With These 7 Tips
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Delicious mid-week dinners are now possible.
When you think of the word ‘meal prep’, we bet you’re picturing rows of Tupperware and a week’s worth of the same ‘ol boring lunch. But unless you literally live in your kitchen, we suggest actually giving it a shot.
Look, you don’t have to go from takeaways to box queen overnight, though these easy tips will definitely help you save tons of time during a busy week (and it’ll help you stick to your clean-eating plan), without skimping on taste.
Start with a plan
Pick a day to plan out the week’s meals and then hit the supermarket. Generally, Sunday is the easiest day of the week to prep and check what’s already lurking in your fridge.
Use what’s in your fridge
To save yourself a lot of time and money, try and plan meals around the ingredients you already have stocked in the house. What can you do with that bag of lentils? And easy vegetarian lasagne? A warm salad with root vegetables? Yum.
Just like buying in bulk saves you cash, it also pays to cook in large batches. Do a huge cook of grains and proteins – like quinoa or hard-boiled eggs – that you can use in multiple dishes throughout the week. Hard-boiled eggs make a great breakfast and are a perfect salad topping, while quinoa can be served as a warm side dish or become the base for a salad. Sorted!
Herbs, spices, and condiments will definitely shake things up. Made a large packet of chicken breasts? One night, just top them with some canned tomato and parmesan and pop it into the oven to bake. Another night, top it with hummus and feta cheese. Yup, two totally different flavours from a bland chicken breast.
Work that equipment
Got a grill? Great! Load it up with different ingredients: meat, veggies, tofu – whatever fits – and make a meal out of it!
If you don’t have a grill, you can roast chicken breasts, veggies, and potatoes together just as easily. “One-pan meals” are super-easy meals. Hey, why wash three pans if you could only scrub one?
The freezer is your BFF
You can prep and combine mid-week dinner ingredients in freezer bags. Stash them in the freezer until you’re ready for that meal. Think hearty soups and pastas. And PS: this strategy totally works for smoothie ingredients too.
Outsmart your ingredients
Ingredients like garlic, ginger and greens often require extra washing and chopping which can really drag out your meal-prep process. So, opt for pre-chopped and pre-washed packages. It’ll simplify your cooking process.