Clean Eating Meal Prep
The more prepared you are, the easier clean eating will be. With some useful clean eating meal prep tips, you can get everything organized on a day off and not have to worry when it comes to those busy times. Create your own convenience foods, and know that they’re healthy and excellent for you. Below is a clean eating meal prep guide to get you started.
Clean Your Cupboards Out
You need room for all your new foods. Make sure your cupboards, fridge and freezer are all cleared out of anything that isn’t “clean.” Look at the back of packages if you’re unsure about anything. The last thing you want is anything tempting in the house. Now make a list of everything you’re going to need.
Food Prep Basics
Each day, strive to consume a balanced combination of protein, healthy fats, carbohydrates, vegetables, and fruits.
Healthy proteins include lean beef, turkey, chicken breast, fish, egg whites, and vegetarian sources. Use healthy fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, and nuts for snacking or cooking.
For carbohydrates, sweet potatoes, quinoa, oatmeal, brown rice and 100% whole grain bread or pasta. Consume a variety of fruits and vegetables daily.
Use these ingredients and consume meals according to your desired portion size.
Organize Your Meals
Think in advance of all the meals that you can cook. There are a lot of home favourites that you can opt for when eating clean, including spaghetti sauce, 100% whole grain lasagna and curry sauce. Nothing is not allowed.
In the beginning stick with recipes you are familiar with. Then proceed to add new recipes gradually over time.
Look online for healthy cookbooks, join an online meal planning resource that makes meal planning easier, or review our compiled group of healthy recipes featuring gluten free, paleo, vegan, or vegetarian recipes.
Make a healthy grocery list of everything you need. Having a list will help limit the temptation when it comes to processed foods.
Clean and Slice Before Putting Away
Make it as easy as possible to just grab and go. One of the top clean eating meal prep ideas is to clean and cut up your ingredients in advance.
Have separate tubs for your pre-chopped vegetables. Place fruit in a basket on your counter. Prepare smoothie bags and place them in the freezer. Split your meats up into portion sizes and freeze it to make it easier to grab one meal as required. Organize your cupboards so everything you need regularly is within arm’s reach. Make your kitchen work for you.
Prepare Meals In Advance
The best part of clean eating meal prep is making meals convenient. Prepare all your meals in advance, so you can just grab and go using these wonderful meal prep kitchen tools.
You could prepare meals in batches, place meals in your fridge or freezer. Prepare 1 or 2 recipes ahead of time. This habit will create opportunities for you to avoid packaged, refined options in the grocery store or restaurants.
Another option is to prepare meals once a day. If you’re a morning person and like to prepare meals in the morning, stick with it.
You can place pre-cooked 100% whole grain pasta in the fridge. Place it in containers you can use for pasta salads or heat up quickly to use with your home made sauce. Bake muffins for breakfasts and keep them in air-tight containers, or make overnight oats the night before a busy morning.
Limit Washing Dishes With One Pan Cooking
The downside of clean eating meal prep is the amount of dishes you may need to wash. You can cut down the amount of washing up you do, with the following tips.
When preparing to season your meat use aluminum to split up your pan. This works great when using an oven pan. Once the meats are seasoned, place them in separate aluminum foil dividers therefore only one pan will need to be washed. Use that pan again for your next dish. You’ll soon wonder what the issue was.
Meal Prep Tools
Other Useful Tips
1) Create DIY glass oatmeal jars for healthy snacks and breakfast
2) Place your favourite nuts, veggies, pretzel etc in baggies or portable jars for convenient snacks
3) Freeze blended smoothies in muffin tins then toss 2 or 3 smoothie muffins into a blender for a convenient breakfast.
This clean eating meal prep guide should get you started. You will soon find that it is simple once you get into a routine. However, to be sustainable it needs to fit into your lifestyle. Focus on what works for you. If at this particular moment you only want to prep smoothie bags for your daily smoothie or mason jars for your daily salad, that’s ok. Don’t feel pressured that clean eating meal prep must be done a certain way as that is not true.
Remember it takes time to form a habit. Clean eating food prep is no different. Don’t give up. Just work at it until the preparation method that works for you becomes a habit. You will need to make adjustments along the way.
Clean eating is about improving your eating habits. It will take effort in the beginning but it’s worth it. Imagine opening up your refrigerator door to see healthy delicious meals and snacks ready to eat.
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