I posted a picture on Instagram tonight of my meal prep and I had so many people asking me for instructions and recipes and questions about meal-prepping, so here we go! This intimidates me SO much, because there are so many other people who are pros at this. Also, I just started cooking this year. So I’m also pretty novice at cooking in general.
I decided to start meal prepping 2 months ago. My husband and I were spending a lot on eating out every week and it was hurting our bank accounts and our health. We would get home from work and be so exhausted that we didn’t want to think about cooking anything, I hated cooking, and it was so much easier to hit up our favorite Thai place than think about planning meals in advanced. I saw a pin on Pinterest about how easy meal planning was and it hit me – if I can just spend 2 hours a week making every meal for the week, it’ll be so much easier and healthier for Gabe and I during the week.
If you’ve been nervous to try meal planning – I TOTALLY get it. If you don’t know where to start – I TOTALLY get that too! So here’s how I started. I found one recipe that I thought was so easy and I made it for our lunches that week. It was an easy sheet pan meal, and that’s usually how I do my meal prep because who likes cleaning after cooking tons of food?! (not me.) After I meal prepped our lunches for three weeks I figured I could add dinner on too. So now we have our protein shakes for breakfast and our meal prepped meals for lunch and dinner. SUPER EASY!!! College kids, newlyweds, married couples with and without kids, married couples with dogs, MEAL PREP! IT WILL SAVE YOUR WALLET AND TIME AND ENERGY!
Okay no one cares about the three paragraphs above, so I’ll get into the recipes now and what you’ll need for these 3 meals (I usually do 3 meals because I like being able to switch up what I’m eating). P.S. – I only spend $60 on everything for these 3 meals that will keep me and my husband fed for the next 3-4 days. I’ll show you the three meals I’m making with the original recipes that I found, the grocery list I made for everything you’ll need, and then my process of how to get everything done in 2 hours.
Chicken Veggie Bowls:
Me! Literally the easiest meal to meal prep! Read on for the recipe!
Grocery List (Ingredients):
1 head of Romaine Lettuce
1 can of Corn
1 can of Black Beans
2 lb of Pork Loin
6 tsp. Cumin
4 tsp. Paprika
2 tbsp. Orange Juice
2 tbsp. Minced Garlic
1 lb. Bacon
2 lb. Chicken
1 Large Sweet Potato (I used regular potatoes because I really don’t like sweet potatoes)
6 cups Broccoli
5 tbsp. Coconut Milk
Chicken Veggie Bowls:
2 lb. Chicken
3 Red Bell Peppers
(Feel free to grab whatever meat and veggies you like! I’ve done tomatoes, asparagus, bell peppers, potatoes, etc. with chicken, steak, and sausage. I love this recipe because it is SO versatile!)
I do all my grocery shopping on Saturday so I only have to meal prep on Sundays and I don’t have to be domestic every day…oops. If you checked out the links to the individual recipes you’ll notice I’ve changed things a little bit so feel free to follow whatever you like! I’ve pretty much doubled the recipe because I’m trying to feed two people and make 12 meals. If you are planning on meal prepping all three of these meals at the same time, keep reading for instructions!
- WASH: Wash your fruits, veggies, meats, hands, and counter top. I am a huge germaphobe and hate starting off in a dirty kitchen and with dirty things. It also makes sure you have a sanitary work space and clean food.
- PREP: Put your 2 lbs of Pork and 2 tbsp. minced garlic in the Crock Pot. Let it sit on high for 2-4 hours or low for 6-8. I prefer 6-8 because it makes it SO yummy and tender! Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut up all the veggies you have. In this case I chopped up the potatoes, broccoli, zucchini, squash, bell peppers.
- BAKE: Spread out all the veggies on a cookie sheet and drizzle olive oil on top(I use two pans so that I can cook more food at the same time). Cook for 20 minutes (Potatoes for 30 minutes).
- PREP: While the veggies are baking, go ahead and cook your Quinoa. Follow the instructions for whatever kind you like. While your quinoa is heating up you can also cut up your 4 lbs of chicken. I like to cut it into bite sized pieces to make it easier to mix with the entire bowl.
- BAKE: When the veggies are done, put them in their meal containers and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Switch out the veggies for chicken and bacon on the cookie sheets. I turn up the oven to 425 degrees at this point. For easy switching, use aluminum foil on your pans! Super easy clean up! Bake the chicken for 30 minutes and bacon for 20.
6. PREP: Now it’s time to prep the avocado dressing and the carnitas bowls. Put the coconut milk, avocados, lime juice, and salt in a blender or food processor until it’s nice and creamy. Keep this in the fridge until it’s time to eat the superhero bowl meals. For the carnitas bowls, I chop up some of the lettuce and distribute the lettuce, corn, and beans evenly between all containers designated for the carnitas bowls.
7. FINISH: When the chicken and bacon are done cooking, distribute. The bacon should be crumbled into the superhero bowls with the broccoli and potatoes. The chicken should be on top. The veggie bowls should have your zucchini, squash, bell peppers, and now chicken. When the pork is done, shred and put into the carnitas bowls.
I debated writing this post as each individual recipe or all together, but if I was just starting out it would be easier for me to see every single step for everything over the individual recipes or it would overwhelm me. If you want to see the original recipes or just do one at a time, you can visit the individual links above!
Well, I conquered my fear and wrote a post about meal prepping and cooking. And look ma, I touched raw chicken! If you have any questions let me know! And if you need to find this article again, PIN AWAY! Or, follow my pinterest page. You can find the link at the top of the article 🙂 Thanks!