EPISODE 006: MEAL PREP—THE SECRET TO UNLOCKING TIME TO DO WHAT YOU LOVE WITH KAT MARRIS
Blog Title: Meal Prep Coach Program
About Kat: I am a chef on a meal prep and healthy cooking mission! I run an online meal prep program called the Meal Prep Coach designed to take the stress out of meal prepping and healthy eating. I also teach meal prep cooking lessons and corporate wellness presentations. I am a food blogger and write about meal prep topics and provide healthy recipes on my blog, Fresh and Balanced. My goal is to help you prepare yourself for whatever life throws at you, one prepped meal at a time!
Notes From Episode #006: Find extra time in your week: meal prep is the secret to unlocking time to do what you love!
-Meal prep can have a huge positive impact on your time, finances and personal goals
-I've been meal prepping for five years. Started meal prepping to lose weight after college and had so much success with it that it motivated me to change careers.
-Quit my corporate job and went to culinary school. Now I use my chef skills to focus on providing resources and helping others learn how to meal prep.
-When you meal prep, you will avoid going through the drive through when you know you have a prepared meal that’s good for you and ready to eat.
-Define where you need help in your life: work, personal areas, financial, health; what goal are you trying to reach, time to relax, financial, save money for a house/vacation, more content creation. Build on reaching your goals with meal prep.
-Food prep helps you financially: you are being intentional about what you buy and save money because you’re buying based on a menu that’s thought out.
-If you want to have more time to create content, film and edit videos or not feel so rushed then meal prepping is for you.
-To start, pick the one meal time you don't have time to cook or struggle with making healthy choices at. Get your prep done, then grocery shop and knock it out! But be smart, don't try and do too much on one day. Break it into multiple sessions if needed.
-Start small! Don't try and do too much at the beginning; start small and build on your skills. Don’t do everything (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and extras for the freezer) Pick one meal time you want to have meals for and prep that to get confident there.
-Tip: Keep the recipes simple. Don’t use complicated recipes and ingredients.
-Get creative and plan ahead! Are you blogging about lasagna and a soup? Try meal prepping those recipes then enjoy the extra time you have to photograph it during the week.
-Meal prep is meant to be a tool to help you not stress you out. Find what works for you and define what works for you. If the tool isn’t working one way, switch the way you use it!
-Common problem: You want to be outside when it’s nice and don’t want to give up your weekends. But the weekday is busy!
Be present and don’t feel guilty. Baby steps are more important than no steps.
Redefine what meal prep is: instead of 2-4 hours meal prep on one day, do a power hour and just create one recipe, cook one lunch for 5 days
Use precooked items to help you achieve your goal. Lots of grains and veggies come precooked.
Slow Cookers and Instant Pot can also do a lot of the work so you can then place them in your meal containers.
Think about the time of day and which day of the week you visit the grocery store and maximize the time when it’s not too busy. Instacart is also great! Check it out HERE.
-Salad prep: clean the food, chop it and its ready! Tips:
Start with a hearty green - broccoli slaw/romaine/cabbage/kale. Use the delicate lettuce for salads you’re eating immediately.
Thoroughly DRY DRY DRY your greens and veggies. It’s your enemy to have moisture in the salad jar.
Store dressing on the side. The only green that can handle dressing on it is kale.
Chop your veggies into bite size pieces, you don’t want to have too big a piece and it’s great to get good flavors on each bite.
Get a good container. Super tight seal is necessary. Snap pack is Kat’s favorite brand, Costco, etc. Snap pack can last a long time, maybe a year and wash well, but don’t use the heated dry with them in the dishwasher otherwise they will warp, so you can hand wash.
-Favorite meals to prep: Soup/Stew/Chili. Great for making a big batch to eat immediately and freeze several portions. You can also use them to throw over potatoes or meat.
Durable meal option: Stuffed peppers develop flavor through the week and are great at making a lot of different flavors
-Kat started her Meal Prep Coach Program because she was helping family and friends with simplifying their meal prep. Benefits:
Takes thinking out of the process - menus offered
Fresh menu every Friday - new, not recycled
Grocery lists provided
Resources available - cooking videos, discounts, meal prep library
-Want to start incorporating meal prep information on your blog but don’t know where to start? Start simple!!
Readers want the basics: how to cook a great protein, vegetables and grains, how to cook rice/quinoa, know when these are done.
-Bring sanitizing wipes with you to clean the cart on the handle. Save yourself some germs!
-By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Favorite quote by Benjamin Franklin
Helpful references from the episode:
Quote: "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail" Benjamin Franklin
The Life Coach School Podcast - Literally have loved every episode and is so relevant to bloggers and anyone trying to build a business!
My favorite meal prep containers are by Snap Pak. I buy the 38oz and you can get them at Costco or on Amazon!