Meal Prepping can save you time and money, but it can be a bit exhausting. IBA Member Jana Williams, of Degrees of Maternity, has some “handy” tips to make it as painless as possible.
Friday is my big cooking day; I’m practically in the kitchen all day long. But, it’s totally worth it, because all the effort I put into the culinary arts on Friday usually pays off for about three days, which equates to a Friday meal and left-overs on Saturday and Sunday. I absolutely love that!
As I was putting together my veggie lasagna masterpiece on Friday, I started thinking about the amount of time it takes to prepare meals from scratch and the excessive use of one’s hands to slice, dice, chop, knead, hand mix, and so on. Don’t get me wrong…I’m truly thankful that I’ve assumed a healthy eating mindset that supports the consumption of natural and organic ingredients (eating more raw foods like fruits and veggies and excluding as much processed food as possible).
Furthermore, this mindset also encourages educating oneself in knowing what’s in a meal by creating them yourself instead of giving the job to the irresponsible food manufacturer or fast food establishment. Overall, I’d prefer to exert the extra energy to create the homemade and pay the extra money to get the naturals and organics for my family rather than spend that same energy and money taking them to pharmacies, doctors’ offices, or hospitals.Meal Prepping can save you time and money, but it can be a bit exhausting. Check out these 'handy' tips to make it as painless as possible. #mealprepping #healthyeating #cookingtips
Because my daughter and I make a lot of items that people can simply buy already prepped or cooked from the store, I’m always looking for time-saving and more importantly hand-saving techniques to utilize in the kitchen. After all, as a new blogger, I have even more of a reason to reserve and devote some of my hand exercising to Degrees of Maternity. In short, I strive to WORK SMARTER NOT HARDER, so I’d love to hear some of your shortcuts in the kitchen.
My Meal Prep Tips
While I’m waiting to hear from you, check out a few winning plays that I’m currently using or aspiring to use in my home:
- Pick one day out of the week to cook a big meal. Make enough to last for several days (if your family is good with eating left-overs).
- Pick one day out of the week to cook entire meals to eat throughout the week (if your family is not good with eating left-overs). Storing meals in the freezer will be necessary if you use this method.
- Pick one day out of the week to prepare a food item(s) that can be used in multiple meals. I got this pointer from a former coworker of mine in HR, whose son-in-law routinely grilled enough chicken on the weekend to last her and his own family throughout the following week. (I don’t grill, but I have been known to cook up and dice enough chicken breast to be used in chicken salad, paninis, pasta, salads, quesadillas, and nachos throughout a given week).
- Use cooking equipment that will automatically do the work that you manually have to do. (For example, food processors and personal blenders are good for chopping and dicing fruits and veggies into smaller pieces. And, standing mixers are easy on the hands when it comes to mixing and kneading).
- Buy packaged fresh veggies that are already shredded, cut up, diced, separated into leaves, etc. This technique works best with your green leafys and hard veggies like carrots and celery, but I don’t usually recommend it for your softer veggies and fruits because they tend to go bad faster when you cut them up. (NOTE: although packaged shredded cheeses are a time saver, they tend to contain an anti-caking agent called cellulose. For this reason, I prefer buying cheese in blocks and shredding it myself).
- Substitute with a time-saver. Use granulated garlic or garlic powder instead of cutting up garlic cloves and use onion powder instead of cutting up onions, when possible. My container states that one fresh clove of garlic is the equivalent of 1/4 tsp. of granulated garlic.
Hey, there’s no shame in the game. Let’s go!
More IBA Member Food Posts you may enjoy:
Welcome to the life lessons of Jana Williams, the wife of a wonderful husband and mother of three awe-inspiring children who are the motivation for what you will read in her blog, Degrees of Maternity.
Through her blog, Jana has combined two areas of focus that she is extremely passionate about (writing and her role as a mother). She has included helpful hints, tips, suggestions, and reflections about education, family relationships, and health and wellness…all from a mother’s perspective.