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Food Prep: How to Make Healthy Meals Ahead of Time

Food Prep: How to Make Healthy Meals Ahead of Time

  |     |   Food and Drink

When you're short on time, it's handy to make meals ahead and stash them for later. Prep these healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner recipes for a quick and easy solution to mealtime. With fresh veggies, lean protein, and whole grains, they're part of a balanced diet and a busy schedule.

 

  • 01of 14

    Slow Cooker Vegetable Stew

     

    This mostly hands-off slow cooker vegetable stew includes beans for protein and creamy butternut squash. Cook up a big batch and enjoy the warming dish for lunch or dinner all week.

     

  • 02of 14

    Easy Greek-Style Barley Salad

     

    Barley, a nutty, chewy, and heart-healthy grain, turns a salad into a meal. With tomato, bell pepper, red onion, feta, and herbs, you can assemble this Greek-style salad up to a few days ahead of time. To keep the textures fresh, toss with dressing just before serving.

     03of 14

    Crock Pot Chicken and Quinoa Burrito Bowl

    Chicken thighs, diced tomatoes, beans, and quinoa make a complete high-protein meal. Topped with melty cheese, the slow cooker burrito bowl reheats well, too. Leave off the cheese or replace it with a dairy-free alternative if desired.

     

  • 04of 14

    Buddha Bowl

    A colorful Buddha bowl, full of different textures and flavors, makes for a delightful healthy lunch. You can cook the quinoa and tofu ahead of time, as well as prep the veggies and make the dressing. All you have to do at mealtime is toss it all together.

     

  • 05of 14

    Whole Wheat Vegan Pumpkin Muffins

     

    Whole wheat and vegan, these pumpkin muffins are a great way to start the day. They will keep in an airtight container on the counter for a few days and can also be frozen for longer storage. Just let them defrost and enjoy.

     

  • 06of 14

    Cannellini White Bean Soup With Swiss Chard

     

    Incredibly easy to make, cannellini white bean soup is vegetarian and well balanced. The pasta and beans will keep you full throughout the day. The soup will keep for at least a few days in the fridge and reheats nicely.

     

  • 07of 14

    Perfect Turkey Salad Sandwich

    Turkey salad is a lean and delicious lunch, especially when served on whole wheat or gluten-free bread. Store in the fridge and enjoy a scoop whenever hunger strikes. It also makes a tasty topping for a green salad.

    Chicken Stew With Vegetables

  • Hearty and full of lean poultry and veggies, chicken stew with vegetables is a cinch to make in the oven and tastes great the next day. Reheat any leftover stew in the microwave or on the stovetop, and it'll taste just as good, if not better, than the day you made it.

     

  • Low-Fat Vegetarian White Bean Chili

    This recipe makes a big pot of white bean chili, full of flavorful spice and healthy protein. It's vegan and gluten free and keeps for four or five days in the fridge. Pack it up for lunch or serve it with cornbread and salad for dinner.

  • Low-Carb Chicken and Cauliflower Casserole

    Casseroles are always great make-ahead meals. You can even assemble this chicken and cauliflower casserole minus the cheese, wrap it tightly, and freeze it. Bake the frozen casserole for twice the recommended cook time, adding the cheese halfway through.

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