Tips for making meal prep a breeze
(NC) Planning and cooking meals in advance has long been a go-to recommendation for busy people. It removes the daily guesswork from what to eat, helps you eat healthier foods, and removes the rush to get meals on the table in time for everyone in the family – even if that’s just you and your dog.
Yet, for many of us, meal prep can feel seriously intimidating or just like a lot of work. Fortunately, there are ways to make it easier.
Here are some simple tips you can follow to get the most out of meal prep.
Keep it simple
Start with the meal you struggle with the most. Buying your lunch every day of the week? Try prepping five midday meals rather than every item you’ll eat all week. Don’t overthink it and lose sleep over the perfect recipes – think about what you want to eat and go from there.
Everyone has their own style of meal prep. While Sundays are a popular day to prepare food, you can choose any day of the week or even spread it out over a couple of days. If you’re having a hard time getting started, try chopping your vegetables when you get home from the store, before putting them away to get a head start on the prep.
Pack immediately after cooking your meal
To get the most reward for your efforts, portion out meals when you’ve finished cooking and not at the last minute when you need to get going. This stops you from accidentally leaving too much or too little food for the final servings. Your meal will stay at its best if you plan to prevent items from getting soggy. Keep your dish fresh and crisp by keeping sauces, dressings or toppers like croutons separate or in divided containers.
Maximize efficiency in your cooking time
Start with items that take the longest to cook, so you can do any next steps with something already on the go. If you’re an ambitious meal prepper, get your slow cooker started, then any roasting or baking, and while those hands-off items are underway, you can cook up any stovetop components.
Opt for healthy and nutritious shortcuts
Don’t be afraid to choose pre-made items that help you save time and stay healthy. Pre-chopped coleslaw or cabbage is a simple swap that can save you time and clean up. Similarly, take the fuss out of feeding your pet healthy and wholesome meals with real ingredients, by grabbing some ready-to-eat wet food such as Cesar Wholesome Bowls that provide nutrient-rich, no-additive options for any dog.
Learn more about healthy meal prep shortcuts for your dog at cesar.ca.
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