It's a good idea to know in advance which meals you want to prepare. This way any essential ingredients can be included in your weekly shopping list. Use YouTube videos, cookbooks and online recipes for inspiration.
Meal Prep Snack Options
When it comes to healthy eating, poor snacking can all too often undo all the benefits of an otherwise healthy diet. Preparing healthy snacks in advance will ensure you refrain from putting your hand in the biscuit tin! Examples of healthy snacks are trail mixes (dried fruits, seeds and nuts), homemade low-sugar granola bars, protein balls, kale or vegetable crisps, homemade hummus with raw veggies.
Consider Each Food Group
Ensure that meals are nutritionally balanced. Centre meals around vegetables, low-fat proteins (skinless chicken or turkey, fish, shellfish, eggs and high-fibre, plant-based proteins: tofu, beans, pulses and legumes). Also, opt for wholegrain carbohydrates (brown rice, oats, wholegrain pasta or bread, quinoa, rye, millet or barley) and moderate your intake of healthy fats (avocado, olive oil, nuts and seeds).
Make it Easy
Meal prepping should be easy and convenient for you. Choose recipes that can be made using the kitchen utensils and equipment you have available. For instance, if you have a blender, then this is perfect for soups and smoothies, whereas slow cookers are great for hearty stews, curries or meat-based dishes.
Invest in Quality Storage Containers
Food storage containers are one of the most essential meal-prep tools. Ensure you have enough tupperware to store your meals and choose containers depending on their purpose. For instance, if you will be freezing, microwaving or cleaning them in a dishwasher, make sure you choose containers that are suitable for doing so.
Keep a Well-Stocked Pantry
Always check the ingredients stored in your cupboards before you go shopping. Tinned beans, tomatoes and vegetables are inexpensive and are ideal for boosting the nutrition content of your meals.
Don't Neglect the Herbs or Spices
Experimenting with different herbs and spices can make your meals tastier and more exciting. Not only are they versatile and flavoursome, herbs and spices are packed with plant compounds that can offer many health benefits such as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
There is no point making big batches of food if you have no place to store it. The idea of food preparation is to cook meals that can last all week or even a few months (when stored in the freezer), therefore it's important to make room in your fridge or freezer!
We hope these handy tips have helped! For recipe inspiration, we have a variety of healthy, calorie-controlled recipes on our website. Our recipes are easy to follow and are perfect for the whole family!
Alternatively, feel free to download our Figure Plan brochure, where we have more recipes and diet top tips to ensure your meals are packed full of high-quality nutrition!