Meal prepping is one of the best ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle without breaking the bank. Its efficiency enables you to save on time, money and the stresses of choosing and cooking your food. This article will explain what meal prepping is all about, how it can help you and your bank account, as well as tips for saving money with meal prepping.
What is Meal Prepping?
Meal prepping is the process of planning and preparing your food ahead of time. It involves selecting a menu, shopping for the ingredients and cooking all the meals in advance. Once meals are cooked, they are packed and labelled according to the consumption time.
Meal prepping has been popularized in the recent past because of its many benefits. Health apps and fitness tech has made it easier for individuals and families to maintain healthy and fit lifestyles.
Benefits of Prepping Your Meals
Although prepping all your meals for the week in advance can seem daunting, it has many benefits. These include:
- Time Saving. The average American spends 37 minutes daily cooking and cleaning up. Prepping all your meals in one go saves you time and energy. It can help you to focus on other things like working during the day and relaxing with your loved ones when you get home because you know your meals are already prepared.
- Saves Money. You can save so much money by preparing your meals for the entire week. This is the easiest way to avoid ordering expensive unhealthy takeout meals and eating out, which can be quite expensive. Prepping meals forces you to shop for specific ingredients on your shopping list, reducing impulse purchases. Additionally, you tend to buy these ingredients for your meal preps in bulk, giving you more discounted prices.
- Use of Healthy Ingredients. Unlike takeout and restaurant meals, home prepped meals are cooked from fresh and healthy ingredients. Meal prepping gives you control over the process and ingredients. You can therefore avoid toxic additives and preservatives by selecting your own ingredients and preparing meals in a healthier manner.
- Reduces Stress. Whether you love cooking or not, choosing and making proper meals on a daily basis can be stressful. This is why many people end up ordering unhealthy meals after a long day at work. Meal prepping reduces the stress of cooking meals by eliminating the struggle of choosing meals last minute since everything for the week is prepared in advance.
- Supports Healthy Habits. Besides shopping efficiently, meal prepping supports portion control and eliminates temptations of binging on unhealthy foods. You can easily lose weight because you have access to healthy meals every time you feel hungry.
Smartest Tips For Saving Money with Meal Prepping
There are many ways that you can up your meal prepping skills and enjoy the benefits of this healthy habit. The following tips will ensure that you save money when preparing your meals.
- Start Small. It’s best to start small if the notion of preparing your meals in advance intimidates you. Perhaps, you can begin by making lunches for the week, and then the following week you step it up and prepare lunches as well as dinners.
- Use Seasonal Produce. Seasonal produce is much cheaper and easier to find. To save money on meal preps and enjoy a wider variety of foods, you should change your recipes according to the seasonal foods
- Visit Farmer’s Markets. Farmer’s markets are known for their fresh and organic ingredients. If you really want to get a bargain you should go to these markets in the evening when the sellers are about to leave and eager to get rid of all their produce.
- Use Fitness Apps. Fitness apps and nutrition apps can give you great recipes and tips for prepping your meals. They can also give guidance on the exercises and healthy eating habits that you need to improve your lifestyle.
- Reinvent Meals. Whenever you have leftover meals, you can repurpose them into snacks and eliminate food waste. For instance, cut vegetables can be used in stir-frys, while leftover smoothies can easily be frozen into popsicles.
Ultimately, meal prepping is good for you, your overall health, and your finances. It gives you more control over what you put into your body as and saves time throughout the week which ensures that you maintain a healthy lifestyle at a cheaper cost.