These recipes will reduce your time in the kitchen and save you money.
Meal prepping has been trending in the food world for quite some time now, but what exactly is it? Let’s boil it down: You carve out some time on your calendar (preferably early in the week) to cook up large batches of food that can then be reheated, used in new dishes, or simply munched on as is later in the week.
To make the experience as aesthetically pleasing as possible, you’ll then want to store all the goods you whipped up (like grilled chicken, homemade oatmeal, and quinoa) in gorgeous dishwasher, microwave, and freezer-safe food storage containers. And voilà! A few hours (at most) set aside in the kitchen on a lazy Sunday afternoon reduces time and money spent on food through the rest of the week.
Plus, having ready-made healthy options to pick from when snack time hits will mean you’re more likely to leave that bag of chips on the shelf and opt for something more nourishing.
And don’t worry: Meal prep recipes don’t have to be bland. To help get you started, we’re sharing 11 enticing meal prep recipes, like an apple baked oatmeal (perfect for breakfast!) and a healthy Italian wedding soup, all shared by some of our favorite food influencers. If these recipes don’t make you want to hop on the meal prep express train…well, then, we know of some fantastic recipe subscription kits you might prefer.
Easy, Healthy Meal Prep Ideas and Recipes
Apple Baked Oatmeal
“This apple cinnamon baked oatmeal is studded with fresh apples, raisins, and loads of cinnamon flavor,” says Brittany Mullins, a holistic nutritionist and author of the food blog Eating Bird Food. “It makes six servings so you can meal prep it on Sunday and have breakfast-ready for the week.”
Grilled Chicken Quinoa Bowls
“These grilled chicken quinoa bowls are one of my favorite meal prep recipes because they’re made with such simple ingredients but still so flavorful,” says Mullins. “I recommend using my apple cider vinegar grilled chicken (it’s amazing), but you can switch it up and use any leftover grilled chicken you have on hand!”
Maple Mustard Tempeh Bowls
“If you’re looking for plant-based meal prep options, these maple mustard tempeh meal prep bowls are perfect,” says Mullins. “They combine roasted brussel sprouts, quinoa, greens, and tempeh, and are marinated in a delicious maple mustard dressing.”
Vegan Sweet Potato Burrito Bowl
“This sweet potato burrito bowl is an easy and flavorful dish perfect for meal prep,” says Claire Cary, the foodie behind Eat with Clarity. “It’s packed with flavor, naturally gluten-free, and topped with a spicy tahini dressing.”
Sweet Potato Falafel Bowls
“These sweet potato falafel bowls are vegan, gluten-free, and so easy-to-make,” says Cary. “Packed with fresh veggies, tahini dressing, and fluffy quinoa, these can be baked in the oven or air fried. It’s the perfect meal prep recipe that stores well in the fridge or freezer.”
Sweet Potato Peanut Butter Curry
“This is my go-to one-pot recipe,” says Cary. “It’s vegan, gluten-free, and freezer-friendly.”
Sausage Breakfast Casserole
“I love this breakfast casserole because it’s packed with protein, so it’s a great way to fuel up for the day,” says Ashlea Carver, CEO and founder of All the Healthy Things. “It’s also easy to reheat in either the microwave or oven, which makes it perfect for those busy mornings when you’re on the go.”
Healthy Italian Wedding Soup
“This take on the classic is made with flavorful chicken meatballs, plenty of fresh veggies, and will fill you up without weighing you down,” says Carver. “It tastes even better the next day so I love to make a big batch on Sunday for quick and easy lunches during the week.”
Chopped Thai Chicken Salad
“This is one of my favorite salads to meal prep for lunch because the hearty chopped veggies don’t become sad and wilted by the next day,” says Carver. “Store the dressing on the side for an incredibly flavorful and easy-to-make salad that stays crisp all week!”
Roasted Broccoli Grain Bowl with Arugula
“This hearty vegan grain bowl is packed with flavor,” says Kylie Mazon-Chambers, founder of Cooking with Cocktail Rings and author of Share + Savor: Create Impressive + Indulgent Appetizer Boards for Any Occasion. “Roasted broccoli is served with arugula, quinoa, chickpeas, and avocado, and tossed in a creamy, spicy cashew dressing dusted with a bit of nutritional yeast.”
Vegetable Quinoa Salad with Honey Lemon Vinaigrette
“This vegetarian quinoa salad recipe is packed with seasonal ingredients like zucchini, corn, and tomatoes,” says Mazon-Chambers. “You can easily make a big batch at the beginning of the week and eat it chilled for lunch.”
Must-Have Meal Prep Accessories
We’ve compiled a list of our favorite food storage accessories, but here are a few more food prep essentials.
W&P Porter 8-Piece Fridge Bundle
W&P, one of our Katie Shop brands, fits into our favorite genre: Unexpected finds you end up using every day. Their philosophy? Infusing glamour into daily tasks, and we’re totally on board. That’s why this 8-piece food storage bundle, which is freezer, microwave, and dishwasher safe, is essential for storing all of your meal prepped goods. These’ll make your fridge pretty and your food happy.
Cutting Board Meal Prep Station
For those of us who really need organizational help in the kitchen, this prep station will come to the rescue. A wooden cutting board sits atop four drawers that will easily hold your chopped ingredients. It also includes handy grater attachments and handles for easy transportation. Plus, there are grooves to catch any excess juice if you’re cutting fruit or water-rich vegetables. Reviewers also say that this is a great choice for a housewarming gift.
Our Place Ovenware Set
While you’re cooking up a casserole, or roasting veggies, opt for this exquisite Our Place ovenware set (that also maximizes storage in the cabinet). All the pieces fit together like a puzzle, and together they replace your sheet pan, cookie sheet, griddle, roasting pan, loaf pan, lasagna pan, baking dish, casserole dish, and single-use parchment paper.
Our Place Knife Trio
Few things match the annoyance of opening a can of tomato paste, scooping out two tablespoons, and then covering the can with plastic wrap that eventually loses its seal. With these food huggers, you can keep canned goods and produce fresh without using endless amounts of plastic or bulky Tupperware. This set comes with five reusable covers that can stretch to fit a wide range of produce and containers. As an added bonus, they’re dishwasher safe and come in environmentally friendly packaging.