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Meal prep and planning is not all about just cooking and throwing the meals into a container. There are certain things you need to do to begin prepping meals before you even start cooking. These 3 tips to begin prepping meals ahead of time will help you keep to a meal plan will save you time and money when going to the store.
Set Aside a Day
The key to making meal prepping work before you even start is to set aside a day for the prep and cooking. You may think that prepping should not take long, so you could do the next day of food the night before. The truth is that can become very stressful overtime and you may forget something or just not feel like doing it. Also, consider that life gets in the way sometimes. Picking one day, or afternoon, a week will help you get through the week of prep and make sure you don’t overlook anything or become too stressed. Blocking that time will help you stay focused on the task at hand and allow you to get more done at once.
Cook Like Temperatures Together
One way to speed up the process and make sure that everything is cooked properly is to cook foods of like temperatures together. For example, if you are baking chicken that takes twenty minutes at 375 degrees, you can also bake potatoes that might take an hour at the same temperature. The key is to set up a timer to ensure you are taking out the foods at the right time. This will save on energy costs since you will be running the oven for less time and cooking the same amount of food. Batch cooking several items in the oven will decrease your overall time involved.
Have Containers on Standby
Make sure your containers are on standby and ready to go. You will want to dish out the food for your meals all at once and have everything ready to go into the fridge. You should also make sure the containers are ready for all the meals you are making. This will make sure that you have everything you need for breakfast, lunch, and dinner prep and you aren’t halfway through before you realize you have forgotten something. You will also want to mark each container with the food type, any special instructions, and the time for the food such as breakfast or dinner.
By keeping these three tips and methods in mind, you can make the entire meal planning and prepping process easier. You can also ensure you have everything you need, beyond the food, to get you on the right meal prep and planning track.
What containers do you have on hand and what do you need to purchase to make sure you streamline your meals to make them ready to use?