Meal prep 101
Save time & support hormones.
Why meal prep is worth (a little) effort
Tired of resorting to takeout (or a bowl of cereal) for dinner? Want to have healthier food options on hand? Look no further than the power of meal prepping. It’s the ultimate solution for supporting hormones, saving time, and flexing your creativity. It may seem daunting at first, but with a few simple tricks, even beginners can become meal prepping pros. Let’s dig into why it’s worth the effort and a few easy tips to get you started on your meal prepping journey.
What is meal prepping?
It involves planning and preparing meals in advance, typically for the week. Meal prepping is beneficial for anyone who leads a busy lifestyle. While traditional meal prep involves prepping 1-2 main courses (i.e. chili), sides (i.e. tabbouleh), and snacks (i.e. chocolate bark), ingredient prepping is just as effective—and easier! More on this, below.
How to meal prep
- Start by planning your meals for the week. Take into consideration your schedule, what you already have stocked in the pantry, and any dietary requirements. Then, create a grocery list based on your meal plan, ensuring that you have all the necessary ingredients on hand.
- Set aside a specific time each week to cook and prepare your meals. It doesn’t have to be Sunday afternoon! Even a mid-week meal prep session works well.
- To make meal prepping even healthier, consider using non-toxic food storage containers. You’ll use these to portion out your meals for the week (particularly helpful for breakfast on the go). It's also a good idea to prepare some meals in bulk, such as soups or pasta sauces, which can be frozen and reheated when needed.
- Either make it a family affair or put on your favorite podcast—and get prepping.
Benefits of meal prepping
They’re a dime a dozen. Most significantly, you’ll make healthier choices. By planning meals in advance, you’re less likely to make impulsive decisions and resort to unhealthy options or ultra-processed snacks. Meal prepping can also encourage consuming the appropriate amount of nutrients—without overeating.
Another advantage of meal prepping? It saves time, money, and unnecessary stress. When meals are planned and prepared in advance, you can avoid last-minute grocery store runs and reduce food waste. Meal prepping is also a reason to buy food in bulk (rice, chia seeds, nut butter, etc.).
Non-toxic meal prep containers
The world of meal prep containers is vast (to say the least). However, these are our tried-and-true options—for every lifestyle!
- 10-pack glass meal prep containers
- Glass bento boxes with dividers
- Glass with bamboo lids
- Eco-friendly, microwave-safe container
- 3-in-1 stainless steel container
- Biodegradable paper bowls
Ingredient prep vs. meal prep
Ingredient prepping is one of our favorite cooking hacks. Think mise en place, but on a larger scale. It's not exactly like meal prepping, which is cooking entire main dishes and sides. Instead, it’s about prepping the components. For example, chopping vegetables, prepping protein, and cooking simple grains. In other words, make parts of recipes. Food prepping could look like boiling chicken, making a dip or sauce, putting together smoothie bags, or washing and storing lettuce. We recently sat down with Mia Ridgen, a nutritionist and chef, who talks all about how she preps ingredients (instead of meal prepping) on our latest episode of Hormone Happy Hour!
We love hearing about your experiences with beeya!
This week we’re also sharing an article from The Chalkboard Magazine! We were so excited to contribute our thoughts on intermittent fasting for women. Did you know that you can change the way that you fast depending on where you are in your cycle? Learn more here!