One of my long time goals over the past year has been to get better about meal prepping. But, it’s just been one of those things that I said I’d try out eventually, but didn’t make the time.
Lately, though, I’ve been feeling like I could be doing… better, to say the least.
Obviously, this has been a hard time for everyone in many ways. For once, we actually have an excuse to just completely let our goals fall to the wayside.
Or do we?
Nevertheless, working toward my goals makes me feel good and gives me something to focus on. Something besides the fact that San Diego County just shutdown again because people don’t wear their masks…
But anyway, what I’m here to talk about is how meal prepping is helping to improve many areas in my life. While meal prepping is a great way to plan healthy meals, I’ve thought of a total of 5 reasons why I fell in love with meal prepping:
- It Encourages Healthier Eating Habits
When my work day is done (even if I’m working from home), the last thing I want to do is cook. Even though it’s one of my favorite things to do, I am the least productive on a weekday afternoon.
On a normal day, I like to spend a good hour or so unwinding with some Animal Crossing after work. After that, I’m definitely in relaxation mode and not in the mood to slave away to make dinner and clean!
So what’s the easy thing to do? Order pad Thai for the second/third time in the same week from our favorite restaurant a quick walk away.
Pad Thai that is, while delicious, high in sugar and salt – which adds up when you order it multiple times a week!
When your meals are already ready for you to heat up and eat right when you’re hungry, you won’t be tempted to make a quick and unhealthy decision!
2. It Helps Save Your Energy
Conversely, if I force myself to push through my exhaustion at the end of every single day to cook some fancy meal for two hours, I feel burnt out when it’s only Monday!
Again, while I love cooking, feeling like I have to cook every single day just gets… old. Not to mention the fact that I apparently get excited while cooking and create food splatters and dishes everywhere. 🙂
Meal prepping makes every day feel less like the dishes I have to wash and rinse, only to literally rinse and repeat the next day. And the next day. And… you get the point.
Then, by the end, I’m much more likely to get that workout in or use my energy how I want to!
3. It Helps You Save MONEY!
Remember that pad Thai I was telling you about earlier? Well, that delicious dish that’s a mere 0.1 mile away from our condo is a whopping $15 a pop!
Multiply that by 3 or 4 times a week… that’s up to $60 a week out the window!! Not counting the occasional egg roll or Thai tea on the side…
My Trader Joe’s trip for the two dishes I made for this week, however, was about the same price! And that covers lunch and dinner for a whole week!
This was one of the biggest reasons why I knew I needed to start meal prepping. I got a new job this year with a big pay raise, but let myself grow into my new budget without growing my savings.
Meal prepping helps you wastes less money and, with the right recipes, still allows you to enjoy delicious meals!
4. It Actually Saves Time
I think a big deterrent that prevents people from meal planning is the time that it takes to cook all that food!
And I’m not gonna lie to you… it did take up a good 3 hours of my time on Sunday. If I’m gonna eat the same two meals for the next week, I want to put in the time needed to make them delicious!
BUT, I’d rather spend that 3 hours cooking every Sunday when I’m well rested and not in a rush! Working full time for the last 4 years has made me realize that we have a precious few hours at the end of every day.
When I try to cook a high-quality meal during the week, it usually takes at least an hour every day. And that’s not counting the time it takes to clean afterward!
I’ve also learned from self-help podcasts like Kathy Heller’s Don’t Keep Your Day Job to do certain tasks in bulk! That way, I can spend less time cooking and cleaning and more time to have a life in between my work days!
This Week’s Meal Prep Recipes
So, there you have it! While this was my first attempt in joining the wonderful world of meal-prepping, the two recipes I tried this week were a huge success!
It feels so rewarding to be able to sit back and enjoy the work I put in. And even after sitting in the fridge for days, these meals still taste delicious!
Both were found on Pinterest when I searched specifically for healthy meal-prep ideas. They each have such a wide variety of flavors that I’m sure I’ll enjoy all week!
I hope you enjoyed this article and that you enjoy these recipes I found:
- For Lunch: Clean Eating Shrimp Cauliflower Fried Rice for Meal Prep by Clean Food Crush
- For Dinner: Coconut Mango Chicken Meal Prep Bowls by The Girl on the Bloor