It's no secret that meal prep can save you a lot of time and money. In fact, I've even shared exactly how I meal prep for the week in less than one hour here.
But if the thought of meal prep has you feeling anxious and overwhelmed, don't sweat it. Remember that you don't always have to meal prep full meals. Instead, you can simplify meal prep by batch cooking some simple ingredients. This is a great way to save yourself time throughout the week and will set you up to feel your best!
So what types of ingredients can you meal prep ahead of time? We've put together a list of eight ingredients that you can meal prep on a Sunday to help you eat healthy all week long. You can simply store them in your fridge or freezer and use throughout the week.
Grains are a great ingredient to prep in advance. Choose one that suits your needs for the week such as rice, quinoa, couscous, millet, oats or sorghum. Cook it up, then store it in the fridge.
If you choose to go with rice, you can easily use it for this One Pot Mexican Black Beans & Rice. This dish comes together real quick when you have pre-cooked rice on hand!
Click here to add this One Pot Mexican Black Beans & Rice to your That Clean Life meal plan.
When it comes to preparing protein sources in advance, you can choose an animal or plant-based options.
Our three favorite animal-based protein sources to prep ahead include:
- Chicken breast
- Ground meat
Our three favorite plant-based protein sources to prep at the beginning of the week include:
- Roasted chickpeas
You can use both the roasted chickpeas and the cooked rice from above for this meal prep-friendly Honey Garlic Chickpeas with Asparagus and Rice dish. It makes a great lunch!
Click here to add these Honey Garlic Chickpeas with Asparagus and Rice to your That Clean Life meal plan.
When it comes to veggies, it is a good idea to try and chop and prep some of them in advance. This will make dinner time a breeze!
Vegetables that are good to prep ahead of time include:
- Brussels sprouts
- Winter squash
- Sweet potato
- Green beans
You can use your pre-chopped broccoli, sweet potato and green beans for these Meal Prep Veggie Bowls, which are great to have on hand for quick and healthy lunches throughout the week!
Click here to add Meal Prep Veggie Bowls to your That Clean Life meal plan.
If you are buying fresh greens, one of the best ways to keep them fresh is lining a container with some paper towels, dumping the greens on top and then placing a piece of paper towel on top. Then just snap the lid on and you are good to go!
You can use fresh greens as a base for your next salad, just like this Sardine & Avocado Salad.
Click here to add this Sardine & Avocado Salad to your That Clean Life meal plan.
Fresh fruit, especially when it is in season, is one of life's simple pleasures. I personally prefer to store fruit whole to avoid any browning. But if you want to chop and store your fruit in advance, opt for things like lemons, limes, apples, pears and melons. You can squeeze some lemon juice over top of the apple and pear to keep them from browning.
This Watermelon Salad is a great dish to prep ahead of time by cutting the watermelon into bite-sized pieces.
Click here to add this Watermelon Salad to your That Clean Life meal plan.
6. Salad Dressings
Stocking your fridge with easy, healthy salad dressings is a great way to save time during the week. This Maple Tahini Dressing is great to make ahead of time and will keep in the fridge for up to one week. It goes beautifully with salads, protein and veggies too.
Click here to add this Maple Tahini Dressing to your That Clean Life meal plan.
7. Chia Pudding
When it comes to having breakfast options on hand, prepping things like breakfast jars couldn't be easier. A simple recipe to make for busy weekdays is this Blueberry Chia Parfait. It can be mixed in advance and is high in fiber.
Click here to add this Blueberry Chia Parfait to your That Clean Life meal plan.
8. Hard-Boiled Eggs
Keeping healthy, simple snacks on hand is a great addition to your weekly meal prep. Ingredients like hard boiled eggs are easy to make, satiating and keep well in the fridge for up to one week.
Tired of plain old hard-boiled eggs? Try jazzing them up with your favorite flavors, like salt and vinegar!
Click here to add these Salt n' Vinegar Hard Boiled Eggs to your That Clean Life meal plan.
Meal prepping ingredients is an easy task that can be done on a Sunday and can make a big difference in how prepared you feel throughout the week.
What ingredients do you love to prep for the week ahead? We'd love more ideas, so let us know in the comments below!
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