Is your usual meal routine a last minute rush in the kitchen? Or perhaps you’re a big supporter of Uber Eats? Well, getting organised and being healthier with your meals does not have to be hard, it’ll actually make your life a whole lot easier! If you’re new to the concept of meal prep, here are our 6 do’s and don’ts.
The Do’s of Meal Prep:
Do cook ‘freezable’ dishes
The primary goal of meal prepping is to cook ahead of time so you’ve always got something healthy on hand in the coming days/weeks. So focus on the kinds of dishes that freeze well and don’t lose their flavour or texture when you reheat them. Dishes like soups, curries, quiches and bolognaise are great for this!
Also read: Voome’s Top 3 Freezable Recipes
Do stock up on good quality tupperware
It is the absolute worst when you pre-cook meals and store them in containers, only to find they’ve leaked through the fridge, or worse, in your your handbag on route to work! Invest in some good quality containers, in all shapes and sizes, that have air tight sealed lids so you’re stocked and ready to go!
Do buy ‘in season’ produce
Meal prep is all about being savvy! So be a cost effective shopper and choose fresh produce that’s in season. No matter what dish you’re cooking, there’s always flexibility to swap around the vegetables included. So for example, if you’re prepping some fruit and veg sticks in summer to stock in the fridge for your (or the kids!) snacks, pick things like stone fruits. Alternatively during the cooler months, celery is an in-season winner!
The Dont’s of Meal Prep:
Don’t over prep
Unless you’re planning to prep and cook dishes that are all freezable, most meats and produce only stay fresh for 3-4 days once cooked. So instead of prepping your meals for the entire week and missing out on their full nutritional value by the end of the week, just prep for 2-3 days at a time.
Don’t over complicate it
There’s no need to freak out and think meal prep requires you to cook fancy dishes with 10 or more ingredients each! NO WAY. Meal prep is about making your life easier (not harder!). So start with the basics. Some of our favourites include:
- Chicken breasts and a mixture of sweet potato, carrot, eggplant and capsicum roasted in the oven with garlic, paprika and cumin and a drizzle of olive oil
- Poke bowl: in a container, add roasted sweet potato, cooked brown rice, freshly chopped cucumber, carrot and spinach leaves. Then simply add a can of tuna when you’re ready to eat!
Don’t choose vegetables that will wilt or become soggy
Sadly, some of our favourite veggies wilt fairly quickly and make for a soggy mess if not eaten within the first couple of days (damn you spinach, broccolini and snow peas!). So be wise and choose produce that holds its form and crunch a bit longer. Have a good look at your veggies before putting them into your shopping trolley but our favourite long lasting picks include: carrot, celery, beetroot, sweet potato, potato, onion, cabbage and green beans.