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Meal Prep Made Easy – 4 Recipes To Kickstart

Whether you’re a college student, recent graduate, entrepreneur, or working in the corporate world, we all have one thing in common: we all love food. There is no sincerer love than the love of food.

Cooking three different meals a day can be very time consuming for anyone with a busy schedule. Therefore, most of the time we settle for fast food – McDonalds, Burger King, Chipotle, etc. With all these fast food temptations, it’s hard to practice healthy eating. But a healthy lifestyle is one we should all be leading.

Eating healthy will help improve your health, make you lose weight naturally (if that’s your goal), and feel better every day. You’ll also save money!

A healthy lifestyle involves many choices. Among them, is choosing a balanced diet or healthy eating plan. This can be done through meal prepping.

Meal prepping simply is preparing your meals in advance for the week. This means cooking foods in bulk and eating leftovers. I know, some of us are turned off by the thought of leftovers, but it is a huge time saver and actually not all that bad. If anyone knows, I know. I used to HATE eating leftovers. But sometimes, you got to do what you got to do.

Meal prep helps eliminate the stress and time factor of having to cook every single day. You can prep and plan for breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner. But, that decision is up to you and your personal preferences. However, before beginning any meal prep, you should have a plethora of tupperware containers on hand – you’re going to need them!

Now, to start the meal prep you want to have a balance of all the necessary nutrients you need every day which are protein, carbohydrates, fiber, sugars, sodium, vitamins, potassium, calcium, and iron. Note: The amount you need of these nutrients will vary based on your age and weight.

Meal Prepping for Beginners

The two most important things you need to do for every meal prep is:

  1. Pick one day a week as your “plan and prep” day (some prefer Sunday).
  2. Grocery shop on this day as well.

Here are some meal prep ideas to get you started.


smoothie jars

  1. Breakfast Smoothie

You can prepare smoothies in freezer bags or jars and store them in the freezer. This is one of my favorite breakfast smoothies I use when I’m meal prepping. The smoothie is called the Green Breakfast Smoothie by Ayesha Curry.  The ingredients you’ll need for this smoothie are:

  • 1 medium Banana
  • 12 – 16 oz. Coconut water (I’m not a big fan of coconut water so I use regular water)
  • 1 Apple, chopped
  • 1 cup Pineapple, chopped
  • 2 hand-fulls of Spinach
  • Chia seeds sprinkled on top for extra fiber and protein

(Note: You can substitute the ingredients with any fruits you prefer. However, something green should always be included whether it’s spinach or kale. There are also many other smoothies you can make. Trial and error until you find one you love!)

The step by step recipe can be found here.

breakfast burritos

  1. Breakfast Burritos

If you want something heavier than a smoothie, the breakfast burrito is the option for you. Pick a low-sodium, high-fiber tortilla and you’ll make your way to your daily intake of whole grains, which are rich in energizing B vitamins. The way you store the burrito is by covering each burrito tightly with plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. They can be kept frozen up to 1 month. When reheating, remove packaging and heat in microwave or bake in the oven. The ingredients you’ll need are (serving size: 4):

  • ½ Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cooked sausage links, crumbled
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 6 eggs, lightly beaten
  • Chopped cilantro
  • 4 whole-wheat high-fiber tortillas (10″)
  • 1 cup black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1⁄2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 avocado
  • Salsa
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

The step by step recipe can be found here.


Image result for honey sesame chicken lunch bowls

  1. Honey Sesame Chicken (Stir Fry) Lunch Bowls

These honey sesame chicken lunch bowls can be ready in under 30 minutes. You store it in tupperware with equal portions in each. The ingredients you’ll need are (serving size: 4):

  • ¾ cup uncooked rice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups broccoli, chopped into small pieces
  • 3 cups snap peas, cut into small pieces
  • 2 large chicken breasts, cut into small pieces
  • salt & pepper
  • red pepper flakes (optional)
  • sesame seeds (garnish)

The step by step recipe can be found here.

Image result for cajun honey chicken bowls

  1. Cajun Honey Chicken Bowls

Just like the honey sesame chicken bowl, this recipe takes no time at all and can be done in under 30 minutes. You store them in Tupperware in your refrigerator. The ingredients you’ll need are (serving size: 4):

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into strips (chicken tenders can be used instead)
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and sliced
  • orange slices, cut in half
  • lime wedges, for garnish, optional
  • 2 green onions, sliced, for garnish (optional)
  • fresh parsley, minced, for garnish (optional)

The step by step recipe can be found here.

(Note: Both recipes can be used for lunch and dinner.)

Developing healthy eating habits starts with choosing delicious healthy foods. When it comes to more meal prep ideas, your favorite search engine is your best friend

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About Shekera Clarke

My name is Shekera Clarke. I am currently a senior at the University at Albany majoring in journalism with a business minor. I grew up in Queens, NY. QGTM! My goals upon graduating include either writing for a pop culture magazine/blog or work for ESPN because of my love for sports - whether that's behind the scenes or on air.

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