What Does Meal Prep Mean
Meal prep, short for meal preparation, is the process of planning and preparing your meals ahead of time. You can meal prep one day ahead, or take one day to prepare lunch and/or dinner for an entire week. While most meal prep only one or two meals, you can easily meal prep breakfast, lunch and dinner, even snacks for the week ahead. Its entirely up to you!
In this post today, Ive shared a 7 day meal prep for weight loss that includes all your meals and snacks to make it as easy as possible to stay on track.
Shopping List For The 7 Day Meal Plan:
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 1 package flour tortillas
- 1 loaf of bread
- 1 package cheddar or Colby cheese
- 1 jar of salsa
- 1 can ranch style beans
- 2 boxes macaroni and cheese
- 5 lb. bag of potatoes
- 1 can tomato sauce
- 2 lbs. bananas
Total Cost: $25 The meal plan prices are calculated using Aldi prices. If you dont have access to an Aldi store, add $5-$10.
This meal plan assumes you have these basic items in your pantry:
Baking supplies, peanut butter, jelly, spices, and fats. Add $5 more if you dont.
Why Plan Your Fresh Meals
7-Day Fresh Meal Plan
What should I eat today? is one of the queries whose answer might be one of the most confusing and frustrating to find.
Alternatively, if you have people living with you, they get to ask one too many times, what are the plans for todays meal? Some people may choose frozen, canned, or packaged foods when presented with this situation.
Actively pursuing the foods is not always the most prudent course of action.
The foods typically have higher sodium, used as a preservative, and additional sugar, salt, and other fillers that are not the best for good healthy eating.
Many great benefits of meal planning can help you lose weight, improve overall health, and reduce mealtime stress.
The following are a few of the many benefits of planning your fresh meals ahead of time.
Having a meal plan helps ensure that none of the food in your home will go to waste.
Helps keep you from overeating:
When you plan your meals ahead of time, you will consume precisely the required quantity all at once without overeating.
Assists you in getting additional nutrients into your diet:
Planning gives you many options for consuming nutritious foods and shopping for fresh ingredients in advance.
There is a slim chance that you will reach for convenience foods such as ready-to-eat foods and quick fixes.
Also Check: Flat Top Grill Dinner Recipes
Saturday: Southwestern Salad With Black Beans& creamy Cilantro
Southwestern Salad with Black Beans and Creamy Cilantro-Avocado Dressing: If you already made the Creamy Cilantro-Avocado Dressing for Thursday’s meal, you can ignore the first eight ingredients in the salad recipe those are for the dressing. Toss the tangy, creamy cilantro-avocado dressing with crisp romaine lettuce, grape tomatoes and black beans. It makes a flavorful, fresh dinner salad . If desired, top the salad with crumbled tortilla chips for added crunch.
Monday: Roasted Root Vegetables With Goat Cheese Polenta
Roasted Root Vegetables with Goat Cheese Polenta: This is true healthy comfort fooda bowl of soft, creamy polenta topped with warm roasted vegetables infused with garlic and sage. Here, you’ll use up the rest of the Sheet-Pan Roasted Root Vegetables that you made on Sunday. Note that the recipe as written serves two. You’ll want to double the recipe if you’re cooking for more. However, you already have enough leftover veggies to serve four.
Recommended Reading: Best Recipe For Old Fashioned Cocktail
Monday: Simple Parmesan Chicken
The first recipe in the video is simple Parmesan chicken.
You can get the full printable recipe for this delicious Parmesan Chicken here.
This is super easy. Its really delicious, and even the kids eat at least the spaghetti.
First I make the coating for the chicken breast.
We mince garlic and put some garlic with olive oil in a little bowl.
Then you just put it into the microwave for about 30 seconds, and thats what were going to use to actually dip the chicken breast in.
Heating it up just makes it more flavorful.
Itll help the coating to stick to the chicken breast before you put them in the oven.
We use a baking pan and coat it with an olive oil cooking spray.
We use Parmesan cheese in so many recipes. Basically, the coating for the chicken is just breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese. Stir it up. Now dip the chicken breast into the oil and garlic, then into the coating and coat the chicken breast really good.
These are really delicious, really super easy, and really good.
I have another recipe for ranch chicken. I make it very similar, except I dip them in milk, and then I dip them in the Parmesan with the bread crumbs and also a packet of ranch, like the ranch salad dressing mix. Its so good.
While I have the chicken breast going, Im get the spaghetti ready.
I already had the pot boiling in the background and am just going to make whole box.
We bake the chicken breast at 425 degrees for about 10 minutes on each side.
Wednesday: Easy Saag Paneer With Easy Brown Rice
Easy Saag Paneer with Easy Brown Rice: The paneer cheese in this fast and easy dinner doesn’t melt when it cooks. It browns instead, giving a toothsome texture to this Indian classic packed with spinach and spices. Serve this dish over the brown rice you cooked on Sunday for a meal with protein, a veggie and grains.
You May Like: Quick And Easy Baked Zucchini Recipes
How Do I Make A Meal Plan
First things first planning. Before you start to prep your meals, you need a nice, solid plan. Coming up with a meal plan may sound overwhelming at first, but its not as bad as it may seem. Just take it one step at a time and start with one, simple meal you love and that you know is healthy, and then work your way up. Soon, youll be prepping all your meals! Watch out it gets addicting!
Day : Eggs In Tomato Sauce With Chickpeas & Spinach
Eggs in Tomato Sauce with Chickpeas & Spinach: Simmer eggs in a rich tomatoey cream sauce studded with chickpeas and silky spinach for a super-fast vegetarian dinner. Serve with a piece of crusty bread to soak up the sauce. Be sure to use heavy cream a lower-fat option might curdle when mixed with acidic tomatoes.
Watch: How to Make Slow-Cooker Vegetarian Lasagna
Don’t Miss: 10 Day Green Smoothie Recipes
Stock Up Your Fridge And Pantry With Natural Unprocessed Foods
Let me ask you a question.
If your kitchen was stocked full of chocolate, instant noodles, biscuits and Twinkies, what are you more likely to eat?
Its a no brainer
At the end of the day, healthy eating is simple. If youre kitchen is cluttered with all this unhealthy processed stuff, you will most likely end up eating that.
Its ok to have a box of ice cream in the freezer or a packet of chocolate chip cookies in the pantry. But just make sure your kitchen largely stocked up on the good stuff.
And having your pantry and fridge well stocked up, comes down to doing your grocery shopping effectively before the busy week starts.
A Note About Ww Personal Points:
I no longer provide points since they vary on the new Weight Watchers plans but I do provide links to WW Personal points recipe builder for all recipes. Look for the orange button in the recipe card says my WW personal points. Click on that and it takes you to the Weight Watchers website where you can see the WW points and add it to your day . All cookbook recipes in the cookbook index are also updated!
You May Like: Keto Egg Drop Soup Recipe
Day Keto Meal Plan Snacks And Desserts
There are plenty of easy keto snack and dessert options that will satisfy all of your possible sweet and snacky cravings.
If youre after snacks to enjoy between meals, then here are simple snack ideas for every day of the week:
Here are 7 easy keto desserts that are quick to make and a delight to enjoy.
1. Hot Chocolate
My go to keto sweet treat is a comforting hot chocolate, like the above pictured Cinnamon Hot Chocolate. Simply heat 1 Cup of almond milk in a saucepan until simmering. Then, quickly whisk in a row of low carb chocolate and a dash of cream.
Pour into a mug and enjoy! You could also top the hot chocolate with more cream, low carb ice cream or some shaved chocolate.
2. Fruity Parfait
Create your own fruity parfait by layering low carb yogurt with your choice of berries for an almost instant keto dessert.
3. Chia Pudding
Pop 2 tablespoons of chia seeds into a bowl, glass or mug.
Top with half a cup of liquid from the following options almond milk, kefir, low carb yogurt, cream.
I went for a quarter of a cup of almond milk and a quarter of a cup of kefir.
Add a half a teaspoon of stevia for sweetness and stir well to combine. Move the chia pudding to the fridge to thicken for a few hours or overnight.
Enjoy topped with berries, grated low carb chocolate, cream or shredded coconut.
My recipe has only 4 ingredients:
5. Chocolate Mousse
What Are The Best Meal Prep Containers
If you want my guide to the best meal prep containers you can find it here.
When meal prepping, you definitely want a meal prep container that will keep your food fresh. Whether youre prepping meals for an entire week or just a few days ahead, the way you store your meals is just as important as cooking the food. You want to make sure you always store your food in airtight containers to prevent spoilage.
Food containers come in all shapes, sizes and equally important materials. Depending on your lifestyle, you can pick the ones that fit into your lifestyle best. If youll be taking a lot of your meals with you on the go, the slimmer and lighter the container is, the better. Also, make sure the container is suitable for keeping in the freezer and/or microwave use, depending on what youll be using it most thats why I love these glass meal prep containers. There are plenty of options and after youve done your planning, it will be much easier for you to determine what kind of container is the best option.
Don’t Miss: Basic Drink Recipes For Bartenders
Can You Freeze Meal Prep Food
Freezer meals are a great option, especially when you have extra food you know you wont get to in time before it spoils. Before you freeze any cooked food, make sure to let it cool down completely. You may need to transfer your meal to a larger bowl and place in the refrigerator to cool.
For easy thawing and storage, freeze your meal prep either in airtight freezer-safe containers or freezer bags. If using a freezer bag, make sure to squeeze out as much air as possible before placing your meal prep in the freezer.
When youre ready to eat it, you can either let your meal prep thaw overnight in the fridge and then reheat in the microwave for around 2 minutes or reheat it in the microwave while frozen for 4-5 minutes. Easy peasy!
More Healthy Meal Prep For Weight Loss
Alright, now that I have you hooked on healthy meal prep for weight loss and al its glory, check out these other great meal plans to help you to keep eating healthy!
I hope you like the recipes Ive shared in this meal plan. The meals are recipes I like to eat and meals I ate when I have tried to lose weight.
Remember that every person is different and requires slightly different calorie intakes to lose weight at a healthy rate. If youre combining this with a workout routine, you can increase the amount of calories easily by adding in another 200 calorie snack to find what best suits you and your needs.
The idea of this meal plan is for you to focus on enjoying your food and having meals prepped for you that you know are well-balanced so you dont have to worry about counting calories. I find calorie counting to be tedious and I get overly obsessive so I like to choose meals that are naturally healthy and nutritious to add into my meal preps like the recipes Ive chosen for you today.
You dont have to think about the calories youre going to eat, what youre gonna eat, its just so much easier to plan and prep ahead.
Recommended Reading: Dairy And Soy Free Recipes
Weight Loss Meal Plans
There are many weight loss meal plans online, and it can be difficult for a person to know which one to follow. However, a diet that is rich in whole foods and limits processed foods is a good starting point.
This article describes how to plan a meal for weight loss and includes a 7-day meal plan for people to try. It also discusses other helpful approaches to weight loss for different groups and those with different dietary requirements.
A person should plan their meals according to their requirements. They should consider:
- how much weight they need to lose
- their activity levels
- any dietary requirements for health conditions
- any personal, cultural, or religious dietary requirements
- how much available time they have for food preparation and shopping
- their level of cooking expertise and the difficulty of recipes
- whether the meal plan needs to include other members of the household
There are resources available online that can help a person plan their meals. However, each plans nutrient content can vary greatly, so a person must ensure they are receiving a sufficient amount of vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
The section below contains a healthful meal plan for weight loss that a person can adapt as necessary.
Tips For Healthier 20
1. Take Advantage of Convenience Ingredients-But Always Check the Labels!
Most of the time, we tell you to keep your shopping list focused on the ingredients that can be found along the perimeter of the grocery store-namely, the produce department, meat and seafood counters and dairy section. But that doesn’t mean shopping in the other aisles of the store is off-limits. There are plenty of healthy convenience items you can rely on to help get dinner on the table quicker. Think pesto, simmer sauce and pineapple salsa-just be sure to take a peek at the ingredient lists and nutrition labels. You’ll want to compare products and go for those with less sodium and simpler ingredients .
2. Read the Recipe from Start to Finish Before You Begin
Read the recipe all the way through, get out the ingredients you’ll need and then start cooking. A lot of time can be saved in the long run if you familiarize yourself with the recipe first and have all your ingredients easily accessible. Chances are you’ll have two pots or pans going at once to speed things up, and knowing the recipe flow means you won’t need to stop after each step to go back and read the recipe or gather ingredients from the fridge.
3. Create New Meals with The Same Formula
Also Check: Lose Weight Meal Prep Recipes
Keto Breakfast Fry Up
The above big low carb breakfast fry up which includes:
- Fried eggs
- Leftover sausages
It was all cooked/heated up in plenty of coconut oil in a frying pan.
You could cook your eggs any how you like, fry them up with your choice of vegetables from the following low carb foods:
You can use low carb sausages as the meat portion or fry up bacon, leftover roast chicken/meat or any other breakfast protein you like.
2. Cheesy Fried Eggs
If you like crispy cheese and crisp fried eggs, then this is the perfect breakfast for you.
Start by frying a circle of cheese in a frying pan, then crack a couple of eggs over. Cook until the eggs are done to your liking. Serve with your keto vegetables of choice.
You can fill an omelette with your keto fillings of choice. Mine are usually cheese and mushrooms and here are more ideas for you.
Its easy to make a nutty keto granola that you can enjoy with low carb yogurt.
Youll need a couple of cups of nuts, coconut, vanilla, stevia, cinnamon, salt and an egg to bind it all together.
5. Breakfast Cookies
You can make ahead this grab and go breakfast treat thats packed full of protein goodness.
6. Low Carb Oatmeal
This warming chocolatey breakfast uses ricotta to mimic the texture of oatmeal in a keto friendly way.
Its low in carbs, high in protein and makes an welcome change from regular keto breakfasts.
7. Breakfast Smoothie or Shake
- Almond Milk
- Sugar Free Jam
Can You Lose Weight With Meal Prep
Meal prep is a simple and easy way to track your food intake. Whether you just want to stay away from over-processed foods and eat healthy to build muscle, lose weight, or simply feel better, meal prep is a great idea. Prepping all, or at least most your meals, ahead of time makes cooking and eating healthy, nutritious food easier and quicker than ordering take out or grabbing some fast food on the go.
Meal prep is one of the best ways to ensure youre eating healthy all day long and prevent the vicious cycle of skipping meals during the day and binging on unhealthy foods once youre finally home in the evening, one of the problems many people who are struggling with losing weight are facing with every day. Plus, its so much easier to grab and eat food youve already prepared than to struggle with also cooking and/or prepping it when youre hungry.
Don’t Miss: Best Green Smoothie Recipes For Weight Loss