Meal prep and planning tips and tricks

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It’s easy to fall into the fast food trap when hunger hits in the throes of a busy week.

But by setting aside some time for meal preparation and planning, you can keep your healthy eating regime on track. And it doesn’t need to take as long as you’d think.

A Sunday afternoon spent planning and doing a cook up will not only save you time, but money and brain power too!

There’s bound to be some trial and error involved, but here’s some simple tips to get you started.

  1. Tailor your meal prep to your lifestyle. Some people pre-cook meals for a week, but you might only need a few days’ worth. Take a look at your weekly schedule to work out what meals you’ll need and when, in between social engagements and dining out.
  2. Draw up a menu of delicious, nutritious meals and make a shopping list before you leave for the grocery store. Make sure you are ticking off the recommended serves of protein, grains, fruit and vegetables in each meal.
  3. Consider how you will store your meals once they are cooked. It can be helpful to do a container audit before embarking on a big cook up. Asking yourself questions like: Will the meals need to be reheated? Will they be frozen, or stored in the fridge? Do I need multiple compartments for hassle-free transportation to work?
  4. Choose meals that will last the distance. There’s nothing worse than having a soggy meal at lunch – or giving yourself food poisoning!
  5. A good option to whipping up full meals is buffet meal prep, which involves batch cooking individual ingredients like roast vegetables or shredded chicken. That way, you’ve already done the hard yards, and you can mix and match meals throughout the week.

Some healthy cook-ahead staples for meal preppers are:

  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Quinoa
  • Brown rice
  • Overnight oats
  • Roast vegetables
  • Mince meat
  • Grilled chicken breast
  • Whole wheat pasta


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