Food prep can seem like a thankless task, given it is so arduous, boring and likely to produce rubbish tasting food sometimes; and let’s face it – it doesn’t take 15-20 minutes! However, we have 7 top tips for food prep, to help you prep like a boss and progress towards your goals more successfully.
Being consistent with prep will not only help you attain your fitness related goals more quickly, but will save you money and in some cases can help reduce stress or anxiety associated with food choices.
Have a read of our tips below, to see how you can improve your food prep today!
- Keep it varied; the same meals quickly become boring and lose their taste – especially cold lunches and dinners. Buy ingredients that force you to prep a few different meals each week, as even a little variation is bound to help you stick to your diet better than a conveyor belt producing only the same flavours, textures and smells!
- Get decent tupperware, and enough of it! This may sound simple, but not having enough or good quality tupperware can be a nail in the coffin of any promising health drive. This can lead to no container for your food, or even worse – food prep finding its way out the container and on to or into your belongings in your bag.
- Be smart, be lazy – cook double portions of dinner! Double up on your dinner portions; serving half, and placing the other half in Tupperware, before allowing it to cool, sealing it and refrigerating it. This is a terrifically easy way to prep your food, and prevents a marathon or late night cooking session (followed by the even later night, bad-tempered washing up slog).
- Share the load with your partner, family member or friends. Take it in turns to prep food, or even help each other out. This way you can hold each other accountable, have breaks from prepping, get the job done quicker and even prep for 3-4 days a lot more efficiently than you otherwise would.
- Keep it colourful. This is mainly in regards to vegetables, where aiming for a variety of colours and textures will help you increase the range of vitamins and minerals you include in your diet. More vegetables also helps bulk out a meal, increases fibre and water intake, and adds to the flavour in most cases. Try roasting vegetables, raw vegetables or frozen vegetables that you microwave, in order to increase portion sizes without increasing prep time.
- Microwave products to the rescue! Express grains such as rice, quinoa, bulgar wheat are all great, as are the marketed healthier microwave meal options. We often simply prep the protein and vegetable portion of our meals, and add the grains before eating. To keep these from drying out the meal, low fat mayo and green or red pesto are all good sauces.
- Prepare to fail. Fitness bloggers and Instagram accounts may have all the time in the World to cook each meal and prep on the daily, but for those of us who work taxing, arduous, time-consuming hours we are inevitably going to fail to prep perhaps once or twice a week. The key is not to beat yourself up about this, but in this situation, the key is to prepare to fail. Note the healthy eateries in your vicinity at work, combos of foods from supermarkets and even lower calorie options at fast food chains. As long as you know the caloric intake (roughly), you can stay on track with your diet overall knowing one lunch won’t have a negative impact.