You’re sick and tired of…
- Entering complex recipes into MyFitnessPal
- Slaving away in the kitchen for hours each week
- Having a sink full of dishes to do
…and worst of all, dreading the time it needs to be done every. single. week.
You know having food cooked in bulk ahead of time is the platform for your success, but there has to be another way.
And there is.
It doesn’t always need to be dreadful and time-consuming.
And it definitely doesn’t have to be 7-14 Tupperware filled with the exact same meal.
If you don’t (or won’t) cook, I encourage you to order from a meal prep company.
Some of my clients do this for a few meals a week to 75% of their meals.
Do what works for you.
If you are willing to cook, you’ll find that once you simplify and systemize, you can keep effort, clean-up and time spent in the kitchen to a minimum.
#1 – Make It a Habit
In the same way you brush your teeth every day or go to work (even when you don’t want to), you want to build your grocery trip and cooking time into your routine.
Going on the same day around the same time each week helps immensely with this.
When it’s a habit, there is less mental and emotional anguish surrounding it.
In the same way that half the battle with training is actually getting to the gym, half the battle with nutrition is actually getting to the grocery store and cooking the food to set up your environment for success.
#2 – Treat It As a Dial
I think one of the biggest mistakes people make is viewing meal prep as all-or-nothing.
They think that if they don’t have hours to prepare elaborate meals, they need to resort to the work cafeteria or hitting up the McDonald’s drive-thru.
This simply isn’t the case and as you may have learned by now…
“All-or-nothing typically leads to nothing” – Dr. Jade Teta
Instead, treat it as a dial.
When life is crazy, turn the dial down and grab the rotisserie chicken and steam-in-bag veggies and rice or order from the aforementioned meal prep company.
When you have more time and want to experiment, you turn it up and try the Asian meatballs or chicken white bean chili.
See what I mean?
#3 – Get The Right Kitchen Gadgets
Get kitchen appliances that make cooking easy—like the air fryer. Chicken breast comes out juicy, potatoes and veggies get crispy, and each cook in less than 20 minutes.
Other options include crockpot, George Forman grill, and instant pot for quick or minimal effort, and easy clean-up.
If you don’t want to buy anything, you most likely already have these: baking sheets, foil, skillet and non-stick spray. These work well for sheet pan meals and stir-frys.
#4 – Cycle Through A Few Basics
You can use THIS guide to build your first few meals.
Learn how to make 2-3 meals that you like, cycle through them, then gradually add new ones to your rotation.
So let’s say you learn how to make sheet pan chicken breast with veggies and potatoes, turkey chili, and beef taco bowls.
You would cycle through those meals for a few weeks, and then gradually add new and put a different spin on the old to avoid boredom.
And if you’re someone who can’t stand the idea of eating the same meal two days in a row, you can…
#5 – Mix And Match
Cook plain, single-ingredient foods to mix and match and add various condiments, to avoid getting bored with the same exact meals and flavors.
For example, cook rice, potatoes, chicken, flank steak, brussels sprouts, and broccoli in bulk and then mix and match with your favorite hot sauce, ketchup, seasoning, etc.
Stop wasting emotional energy thinking about how much you hate it because we all know that only makes it harder.
Q: It’s hard for me to do meal prep on weekends since I always have so much going on. Does it matter what day I do it?
I ran into the same issue, so I’ve been doing my shopping and cooking on Wednesdays for a few years now.
It’s less likely for obstacles to come up which means I’m more likely to get it done.
I encourage you to find a block of obstacle-minimal time in your schedule and commit it to shopping and cooking.
Q: What are some good recipes that are also healthy-ish and high in protein?
I share ultra-simplified recipes HERE. Take a look and let me know if you try any!
Q: Sometimes I forget my lunch or have to grab something to eat on the road. Any suggestions?
I’ve done the same. I recommend setting a reminder on your phone to avoid forgetting.
Also, I have a list of 15 minimal-prep-required convenience foods you can check out HERE.