These days no one really has the time to spend hours in the kitchen. Try these 6 meal prep hacks that are sure to save you time and energy.

1. Chop or spiralize raw vegetables in advance.

spiral-veggies

Photo via Inspiralized.com

Too hungry to make dinner at the end of a long day? Cut veggies in bulk ahead of time to avoid wasting precious minutes chopping on busy weeknights. You can make this step a breeze with a simple Spiralizer (around $30 apiece). Zucchini noodles and butternut squash noodles will stay fresh in the fridge for 3-5 days, and chopped vegetables like carrots, onion and pepper will last a week when refrigerated properly in a sealed plastic bag or container. Photo and tip: Ali / Inspiralized

2. Create healthy oatmeal jars.

oatmeal-jars

Photo via Clean Crush Food

Fiber-rich foods like oatmeal are ideal for keeping you satiated until lunchtime, but most packets have lots of added sugar and unnatural preservatives. If you DIY and use portable glass jars, you’ll control exactly what and how much you’re eating. From “monkey mix” to “raspberries and dark chocolate,” these genius flavor combinations will keep your taste buds happy, too. Photo and recipe: Rachel / Clean Food Crush

3. Chicken Fajita Bowls

Photo via: Sweet Peas and Saffron

Photo via: Sweet Peas and Saffron

These chicken fajita lunch bowls are perfect to prep on the weekend and to keep in the fridge for lunch or dunner throughout the week. Use 2 chicken breasts, 4 mixed peppers, brown rice, and corn to prepare quick meals for the entire week. Photo and recipe: Sweet Peas and Saffron

4. Grilled Shish Kebabs

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Life by Daily Burn

Kabobs aren’t just for street meat. Weighing your chicken (or salmon or beef) and putting it on wooden skewers can help you control how much you’re eating in one sitting. (Four ounces of chicken has approximately 36 grams of protein, and six ounces of salmon has 34 grams of protein.) Cook up a batch and save some skewers for the rest of the week. If you’re using wooden ones, remember to soak them in water so they won’t catch fire in your grill or oven. Photo and recipe: Emily Miller / Life by Daily Burn

5. Almond Butter Rice Krispie Treats

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Fit Foodie Finds

Making a pan of these healthy rice krispies on Sunday will give you dessert for the rest of the week.

6. Protein-Rich Snacks

Life by Daily Burn

Life by Daily Burn

Protein is essential for muscle recovery after a tough workout and it also keeps hunger at bay — making it an A+ choice for snacks. Instead of reaching for a packaged protein bar that could have more than 400 calories and 28 grams of sugar, try making your own energy balls. Whip up a batch and store them in the fridge for up to six days. Photo and recipe: Lee Hersh / Life by Daily Burn

Eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive or consuming. Tell us what tricks you use to save time in the kitchen!

 

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