Post by applecrisp1 on Oct 9, 2018 19:24:51 GMT -5
I was wondering do you all meal prep in advance (perhaps just certain things) to save time when puling a meal together -- whether for the next day or week? I know some people that are huge fans (and have seen videos etc from some bloggers I follow) of people spending some time during the weekend getting things together, which in turn, saves lots of time during the week.
I haven't really done much meal prep -- the last few weeks I've trying to up my game to save time during the week. I cooked some quinoa for 2-3 lunches/dinners. Washed and cut some veggies in advance (after thinking I'm peeling carrots etc every day, hmmm). Made a small batch of salad dressing while doing the meal prep. Baked some oat muffins for breakfast (rest went in the freezer). Roasted a bit more veggies than I normally would, and used them in a few lunches/dinners etc. I often cook two or three pieces of chicken at a time, and typically make pasta etc for two meals, but nothing really planned. I would like to do more meal prep since a definite time saver and less clean up too.
Any favorite things to meal prep?
Do you freeze things in advance to save time? I mainly just freeze soup in individual containers for a quick meal (and I couldn't eat all the soup if I didn't freeze), pasta sauce, chili, brown rice. But I would love to expand that since such a great convenience to just pull something out of the freezer especially if a main part of the dinner. Not only does it save time but also less temptation to buy something to eat after a long day.
I meal plan for a week at a time, going on a Saturday to Friday schedule, grocery shopping on Friday on my way home from work so I don't have to drive back into town on Saturday. It is definitely a time saver in my world.
About half of my prep is done on Sunday's. Say for example, slow-cooked chili for lunches, and depending on the week and meals, I'll prep suppers for a couple days out. I rely quite a bit on leftovers.
I don't typically prep veggies ahead of time, though that's an interesting thought. I think my concern would be chopping veggies, then something comes up and I can't get to that meal - whole veggies won't go composty on me as fast as cut veggies.
I've tried going the freezer route, and it didn't work for me. I tend to forget about things I've stashed in the freezer and remembering to take them out well ahead of time to thaw was a bit problematic. I have frozen individually wrapped muffins for lunches, that's worked okay because they can thaw in my lunch bag.
We would never have a home cooked meal from October - April if I didn't meal prep and freeze so I could pull things out of the freezer. We always seem to be on the go with swim team, Lego League, Scouts, etc.
I freeze soups, stews and chili all the time. I freeze without pasta (pasta soaks up the liquid) and I don't like the texture of potatoes that have been frozen. The first person home puts on a pot of water to boil for pasta or egg noodles.
CL's Diner Meat Loaf Muffins are one of my kids favorites. I make a double batch and then freeze half to pull out for another week
Sunday is the day I usually meal prep for the week, including lunches. If I am planning on a stir fry, or fajitas or something else relatively quick to cook, I do cut up all the vegetables I need. If I am planing a meal in the slow cooker, I get it all put together on Sunday as well, so I can just dump it in on my way out the door.
Post by applecrisp1 on Nov 12, 2018 21:10:18 GMT -5
Loving the bit of meal prep I've been doing. I added some chili to the freezer (a super simple CL recipe that KarenW suggested a few years back). Washed and chopped some veggies. Cooked chicken for dinner and some lunches etc.
So super quick to pull together dinner tonight --- had some extra quinoa, just need to cut up some tomatoes, cucumbers and red pepper, tossed in some chicken that I made on Sunday, along with some roasted chickpeas. Cut up an avocado. Added some dressing. Dinner done in less than 5 minutes.
Thx for the tips! Just added meatloaf to the list --- thx for the reminder, that will be great to have on hand.