Prepping a week’s worth of food on one day may seem like a daunting task, but once you get the hang of it, all you will need is about 2 – 3 hours. Here are a few things that help keep me from spending all day in the kitchen.
Number 1: I love lists.
I make a list of everything I need prepare. I use the Reminders app on my iPad, once I complete a task, I simply check the item off. Simple.
Number 2: Have all my recipes ready
Whether I think I have a recipe memorized or not, I always like to make sure I have them close at hand. Again, I use my iPad for this. I look up the recipe online and mentally check off every ingredient as I go. Trust me on this one. I’ve made several batches of protein muffins and forgot the eggs or a sweetener of some kind because I told myself I didn’t need to check the recipe or I got distracted for a moment by one of the kids. Muffins without eggs or a sweetener of some kind make a horrible snack.
Number 3: Mise en Place
This a fancy french word that chefs use and means “putting in place”. In other words, getting all of your ingredients, utensils, pots, pans, spices, everything ready and set up before you start mixing and cooking. This is key in professional kitchens and a must as a home cook too.
Number 4: Use the timer
I never ever, ever assume I will remember what time I put something in the oven or let something simmer. Prepping for a week means a lot of multi-tasking. Prepping for a week with two kids means a lot of multi-tasking AND distractions. Burning a weeks worth of anything because I forget about is no fun.
Number 5: Keep it clean
Nothing irks me more than having to prep my food in a dirty kitchen. I do as many dishes while prepping as I do cooking. I don’t have an unlimited stock of mixing bowls, food processors or pots and pans, so I wash every pot, spatula and bowl as I go. It’s a lot alternating between cooking and washing and cooking and washing, but with the amount of food I make, I need to have a place to put things…most of the time in a hurry. Designating one area, like my big kitchen island, as the place to set things when they cool or when are ready to be portioned.
Don’t let a food prep day intimidate you. Follow these few tips and you can get it done in a few short hours.
Here’s what I prepped this morning:
- Baked Chicken Breast
- Farfalle with Sausage, Cannellini Beans and Kale
- Banana Berry Protein Muffins
- Sirloin Patties with Smoked Gouda
- Sliced Red Peppers
Not all of this food is for me of course, Justin will eat most of the Farfalle dish and all of the sirloin patties, but the rest of it is for me. This is what my weekdays will look like with everything that I prepped today and a few things that I prepped in weeks past that are in the freezer.
4:00 AM | 2 Banana Berry Protein Muffins and Pre-Workout Drink
6:00 AM | Protein Shake (Post-Workout)
9:00 AM | 1 whole soft-boiled egg and 3 soft-boiled egg whites with dry Food for Life Sesame toast
12:00 PM | Chicken Breast, Red Peppers, Cucumbers and Spinach with Hummus on a Food for Life Pita Pocket
3:00 PM | Protein Shake on non-leg days | Farfalle, Sausage, Cannellini and Kale on Leg days (I need more carbs to get me through my grueling led days!)
6:00 PM | Tuna Steak on Greens or Spaghetti and Kale Chips or Chicken Breast with Guacamole and Greens
10:00 PM | Bedtime
Have a great week everyone!