Meal prepping is a popular way to maintain a healthy diet in a busy lifestyle. If we’re constantly running between class, work, ++ hey, maybe even running [anyone training for a race?], cooking is probably going to fall to the bottom of the daily to-do list. If you’re really busy, it might not be on your list at all. To avoid the lure of quick + easy take-out, here are some tools to keep handy in your kitchen that’ll help you meal prep like a pro–
1] FOOD PROCESSOR
Food processors are perfect for making sauces, condiments, ++ healthy snacks. You can make anything from nut butters to power bites, avocado pudding, + vegan cheese — there are entire cookbooks dedicated to food processors! By making sauces, dressings, ++ nut butters yourself, you’re saving money ++ avoiding added sugars found in most store bought brands. #BOOM
2] BLENDER // JUICER
Smoothies + juices are the perfect nutritious breakfasts to take with you when you don’t have a lot of time in the morning + you’re on the go. To make it easier, portion out bags of frozen fruit + veggies on Sunday, so when you want smoothies during the week, all you need to do is add the bag + liquid to your blender ++ you’re all set! If you have a bit more time in the morning, you can turn your smoothie into a smoothie bowl for a healthy filling breakfast.
3] SLOW COOKER
Slow cookers are awesome + perfect for meal prepping because you can cook big batches of food to have throughout the week, ++ you don’t need to be home to cook! Whether you’re at class, work, yoga class, or even sleeping, you can count on a slow cooker. You can make oatmeal overnight to have for the next morning post-workout, or put chili together in the morning ++ have a warm dinner waiting for you when you get home. Instead of spending hours cooking after an already busy day, all it takes is a few minutes of prep + throwing ingredients together. If you can do burpees, you can make a meal with a slow cooker. ; )
4] ELECTRIC TEA KETTLE
An electric tea kettle is often overlooked as something to make food with, but if you don’t have access to a stovetop to heat up pots + pans, it can save you from making oatmeal with lukewarm microwaved water [yikes!]. Besides making tea, you can boil water to make oats, quinoa, noodles, ++ soup. Bonus: you’ll have boiling water in about a minute, which is usually shorter than what it would it take on a stovetop — perfect for when you’re in a hurry!
Maybe it’s weird to look at your freezer as a *tool* for meal prep, but you can make big batches of food + keep portioned containers in the freezer, then defrost when you need them! Foods like chili, soup, raw fruit//veggies, ++ bread keep well. You can also make fun snacks like ice pops, frozen yogurt bites, chocolate banana pops, ++ healthy freezer fudge to have on hand when you need something healthy, sweet, ++ refreshing [especially as the weather gets warmer! ; )].
Sometimes, we don’t have the time to cook during the day. Fortunately, there are plenty of kitchen tools out there that will do most of the work for you! You deserve better than take-out + microwaveable meals every night. Invest in these tools + make an investment in your health. : )
++Ashleigh Monaco [ashvm_inchaarg] // University of Iowa