Preparing meals in advance as a student can be challenging, but it's not impossible. Meal prep is a great way to save time, money, and stress. Here are some tips that will make meal prep easier:
Preparing meals in advance as a student can be challenging, but it's not impossible.
As the name suggests, meal prep involves preparing food in advance so it can be eaten during the week or month. This can help you avoid spending too much money on takeaways or eating unhealthy snacks on the go. It also means that if you're busy studying or working late into the night, there will still be something tasty and nutritious already waiting for you when you get home!
Shop in bulk
Bulk shopping is one of the most important things you can do to save time and money. Buying in bulk can not only be cheaper, but it also allows you to have more variety in your dishes. Buying a whole chicken instead of individual pieces allows you to cook everything at once and then use them for a variety of meals throughout the week. This means there's no need for multiple trips back-and-forth to ALDI, which leaves more time on your hands!
Create a weekly plan
The key is to think about what you want to eat for the week and how much you'll need to buy. Then, write each meal and plan how much time it will take you to prepare and make it. If you're worried about finding recipes, check out some easy student recipes here.
If this seems like too much work, start with meal prepping for just a few meals per week and build up from there. The more you do it, the easier and quicker it will get!
Make snacks ahead of time
We're going to assume that as a student, you're constantly on the go. You might have classes all day, then a part-time job at night. Even if you don't work, there are still going to be plenty of times when it's tough to find time to make a proper meal. That's why snacks are essential!
You can make them ahead of time and keep them with you for whenever hunger strikes. Snacks will help keep you going throughout the day so that when dinner rolls around (which is usually late) and everyone else is starving, you won't feel like eating everything in sight just because everyone else is doing it. From granola bars made with oats and peanut butter (a cheap but healthy snack!) to fresh fruit slices - if it's easy enough to take on-the-go, then consider keeping some snacks with you!
Once you've finished meal prepping, there's nothing left to do but enjoy your meals throughout the week. It may seem like a lot of effort at first, but once you get into the rhythm of it, it'll be much easier to stick with. You'll probably even start looking forward to it!
When you're in the mood for something different, use leftover ingredients as inspiration for new meals. Leftover broccoli? Throw it into stir-fry along with some chicken breast and rice noodles. Apply this same creativity to any dish and the possibilities are endless, easy and economical.
We hope we've inspired you to try meal prepping as a student. Being organized, smart and efficient in your meal choices is one of the best things you can do for yourself in terms of health and convenience. Meal prepping can help save time and money, so it truly helps in the long run.