It gets to a point during the week where you’re so overwhelmed by work or school that you don’t really have time to cook. These are the times when noodles or avocado toast come in handy. I learned about meal prep before it even had a name from my mum. Once most of my siblings moved out and it was just the two of us, we decided we didn’t really need an in-house help. Since I love to cook, I volunteered to be preparing the meals for the family. Things quickly became chaotic trying to juggle school, work and household chores.
During the weekends I noticed my mum would prepare different foods and store it in the fridge. It wasn’t a wide selection of food but it gave me an idea to try meal prepping.
Meal prep is simply preparing meals ahead of time. It has its own advantages such as saving on time and cost, food management and healthy eating.
- Breakfast Bowls
Meal prep is not just for dinner options. It is important to prepare breakfast dishes as well since breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast bowls contain the essential dietary requirements to boost your energy in the morning. Some good recipes are chocolate almond oats, peanut butter smoothie, yoghurt porridge with pear, walnuts and cinnamon toppings.
- Spaghetti and Roasted Vegetables
Spaghetti is quick and easy to prepare in bulk. It goes well with minced meat and tomato paste. Roast vegetables balance the meal. It takes less than 30 minutes to prepare and the left overs can be used for another meal.
- Dhania lime chicken
This is a tasty meal prep dish that can yield two meals. All you need is 4 chicken thighs, crushed garlic, cumin, salt, lime juice and black pepper. Once the chicken is marinated in the spices and lime juice, bake the chicken in an oven for about 15 minutes. Garnish with dhania then serve with rice.
- Peas & Mushroom Vegetable Pilau
For meal preps, it is necessary to keep the meals as dry as possible since wet foods can cause spillage and go bad faster than dry food. Vegetable rice or “Pilau Njeri” as it’s locally known doesn’t have to be plain and boring. Adding mushrooms and a side of salsa makes it appetizing and visually appealing.
- Microwavable Breakfast Scrambles
Eggs, cheese and potatoes, I believe J. Cole sang about this because it’s that good. Proteins and starch are best consumed in the morning since they’re burnt off as the day goes by. Again, this is very easy and quick to prepare.
- Chapati and meatballs
Chapati has to be one of the most avoided meals to prepare. It can be frustrating, messy and tiring. However, it’s a diverse dish that can be taken for both breakfast and dinner. It lasts longer in terms of quantity. Having meatballs with chapatti is a new exciting twist that you should try.
These are great starter meal preps since they are familiar to most of us and don’t take too long to make. The tip is to start slow. Prepare meals for 2-3 days the gradually advance from there. Make sure to pack the meals in proper containers maintain freshness. Also, don’t get rid of the snacks just in case things don’t work out then you have nothing to eat.