How To Meal Prep Like a Champion

My freshman year of college, I relied pretty much entirely on a meal plan to get me through each day in terms of food. Sophomore year was no different. Junior year, however, has been the year that I've moved away from those dining halls and into a place where I can finally make my own food, my own kitchen. 

Sounds perfect right?

Well, I've found out that I don't really have the time to create perfect meals every night of every week, which I should have probably already known from the start of the school year. Either way, with this realization has come the other realization that if I want food every night, something's got to change — and that's where meal prep comes in. If you want to meal prep like a champ, or at least a meal-prep champion in the making, here's what you're going to do.

First, plan, plan and plan some more. Go on Pinterest and look up fun and simple recipes. I'm talking about recipes that you can make ahead, and then eat off of for an entire week. For lunch, this means that you should find things that you can make in a few hours one Sunday afternoon, put in multiple lunch containers, and be able to grab and go when it comes time to need them every day. For dinner, this could be making meals ahead that you can put in the crock pot the day of or things that you can go ahead and bake and freeze, and then just warm up when you want it. If you don't have time for any of that, planning could also include just finding what frozen foods work best for you to be able to pop in the microwave on a school night and still come out with a decent meal. Once you've got all those ideas, make a list.

Second, make one big trip to the grocery store, instead of multiple trips every time that you need something. This saves time in the long run, and if you're following your list, should be all that's necessary. So follow that list! Also, don't go to the store on an empty stomach, that's just a recipe for buying things that you don't actually need.

Third, go home and put things away, and then get to making your food for the week when the time comes! Make it what you want, put fun salads in cute mason jars and buy adorable containers that let you layer things in the perfect way. Grab some friends to help meal prep with them for the week too. The point is, if you're enjoying making food, then you're going to enjoy eating it. It's the perfect way to get a meal every day, while also having a little fun in the process. 

Follow these simple steps, and you'll be meal prepping like a champion in no time!

What sorts of foods are you cooking this week?