If the idea of meal prepping is daunting to you, we can relate. It can feel impossible and even overwhelming to figure out a way to fit in any healthy meal prep among all of your other to-dos. But, here’s the thing. Meal planning doesn’t have to be hard or even time-consuming. We’re letting you in on the ultimate guide on meal planning with a busy schedule that may be the gamechanger you need when it comes to crushing your healthy eating goals.
Here’s how you can meal prep just once all week (yes, please!)
Your Step by Step Guide on Meal Planning With A Busy Schedule
Step #1 Pick Your Healthy & Delicious Recipes
We believe that healthy eating must be delicious, so naturally, step one of meal planning with a busy schedule is to spend an hour or so browsing Pinterest or flipping through your favorite cookbooks — select super yummy recipes you’ll actually want to make.
Ideally, choose three breakfast recipes and two main course meals.
Step #2 Decide How Many Portions You Need to Prep
Next is to choose how many portions you’ll need to get you through the week in order to determine if you should be doubling or tripling your recipes.
This is where putting pen to paper can come in handy. Simply map out your meals for the week with the ones you selected to see exactly how many portions you’ll need.
Step #3 Prep Some Staples
In addition to your main recipes, be sure to select a handful of staples to prep too. Things like complex carbs, steamed or roasted veggies and cooked protein will come in handy when you need a quick side dish or want to mix and match ingredients to make a healthy meal.
Here are some great staples to prep on meal prep day.
- Brown rice
- Cauliflower rice
- Bell peppers
- Cubed sweet potato
- Ground turkey
- Cubed chicken breast
- Hard-boiled eggs
Step #4 Pick Your Meal Plan Day
Next, look at your schedule and decide which day works best for you to meal prep all of those delicious recipes. The trick here is to select a day where you have plenty of extra time, and where you can actually find some enjoyment in it instead of feeling super rushed.
Step #5 Double or Triple Your Recipes
Depending on how many portions you decided you’ll need for each recipe, now it’s time to decide if you’ll want to double or triple each recipe. If you end up making too much, you can always store it in a freezer-safe container, label it, and keep it in the fridge for next week!
Step #6 Choose The Right Containers
While it may seem simple, having the right food storage containers can make a big difference when it comes to convenience on your meal prep day. Consider stocking up on plenty of individual serving size containers so that you can quickly grab and go without having to worry about reheating multiple portions in one go.
Bento style containers also make it really easy to mix and match your prepped food for a healthy on the go meal.
Step #7 Repurpose Recipes
When it comes to meal planning with a busy schedule, it’s also about finding ways to repurpose some of your already prepped recipes. You can mix and match some prepped ingredients and turn them into a completely different meal with very little prep work.
Here are some yummy options:
- Use prepped ground beef or turkey to make a stir-fry with prepped veggies.
- Add prepped veggies to your morning omelets for an added nutritional boost.
- Use leftover banana bread to make french toast!
- Have leftover cauliflower rice? Turn it into a cauliflower pizza topped with whatever protein and veggies you have prepped.
Step #8 Keep The Base, Add Some Spice
In addition to repurposing your recipes, if you find yourself getting bored of the staples you’ve prepped throughout the week, try switching up the spices or sauces.
Turn that prepped quinoa you have on hand into a yummy cinnamon quinoa breakfast bowl or add some herbs and spices to your prepped brown rice and pair it with whatever protein you have prepared.
Bonus Meal Plan For Busy Schedules Hacks
#1 Rely on One-Pan Meals
These will save you so much cooking and cleanup time!
#2 Make Meal Prep Day Something You Look Forward To
Turn on the music, invite a friend to join, or watch your favorite show with a green juice in hand! Adding in something you enjoy doing along with meal prepping will make it way less daunting.
#3 Prep Your Snacks Too
Consider having your snacks prepped for the week too. Reusable snack bags make it super easy to have your snacks ready to go for the busy week.
Some great snack options include:
- Nuts & seeds
- Celery sticks and sliced cucumber with hummus
- Apple with almond butter
- Gluten-free toast with almond butter and a sprinkle of hemp seeds
- Unsweetened Greek yogurt with berries and a drizzle of raw honey
#4 Try FitOn PRO
Don’t feel like spending hours searching the web for delicious recipes? With FitOn PRO, you’ll get Nutritionist-developed recipes and personalized meal plans, so you can save yourself some time while also knowing that you’re nourishing your body with recipes that are both healthy and delicious.
Busy Schedule? Try Meal Prepping Once All Week
If you have a super busy schedule and are feeling stressed out about when to find time to meal prep your healthy meals for the week, these tips for meal planning with a busy schedule are about to completely change how you think about meal prep day.
With this guide and these quick and simple steps, you can meal prep once all week and have healthy and delicious foods to grab on the go and nourish your body all week.
Here’s to simplifying meal prepping and healthy eating.