Welcome to part 4 of Saving Time in the Kitchen! If you missed the last few weeks, part 1 covered Meal Planning, part 2 covered Kitchen Inventory, and part 3 covered making a Grocery List. I hope you are finding this information helpful, or at least motivating to get organized and start saving time!
Today I want to give you some ideas the one aspect of real food cooking that takes up the most time. Food Preparation.
- Food Prep. The time it takes to prepare fresh food from scratch and include a lot of vegetables in your diet can be overwhelming! This is probably the number one hold up for busy families. It’s hard to find the time to get real food meals on the table. And very easy to fall back on packaged processed foods. But there is hope. Make a plan to prep your food!
I go through periods when I’m really good at prepping things ahead and then other times when I just go meal to meal. I’m starting to find that I really need to make sure I stay on top of having food prepped ahead. My little guy is quickly becoming a food eating machine. A growing boy is going to need healthy snacks that are ready to go! Plus I don’t like to spend uber amounts of time in the kitchen making dinner.
There are a few ways I’ve seen this work well. One idea is to take an afternoon or evening and prep by chopping, cooking, freezing, portioning, all the major meals for the week. This I think works best for parents working out of the home or have busy week nights with activities. It makes your week much smoother and more relaxing. This is also a good idea for having healthy snacks available. Cut up some veggies and put them in glass containers to pull out easily if you need to feed the littles real quick.
Another idea is to schedule in your food prep throughout the week. As part of your written menu plan, write in when you need to prep something ahead of time. I always need to write down when to make mayonnaise so I have it ready in the morning to make lunch for my hubby. Or if you need to soak beans overnight for taco soup the next day. Or bake bread, or make yogurt. Just schedule it in when it will work with your week.
When it comes to vegetables, I try to double up my prep. For example, if I need half an onion for a recipe on Tuesday, and part of an onion for Thursday, I’ll go ahead and chop the whole thing up while I have it and my knife and cutting board out. I can easily store the rest in the fridge and have it ready to go for the next night. Pretty simple concept but it saves some time!
The key to not becoming overwhelmed with getting your real food meals made in a timely manner is to plan ahead with the food prep. That way you are caught last minute with no homemade bread to make sandwiches for lunch. Or stuck spending an hour making dinner when it could only take thirty minutes.
You want to free up some time to spend with your family and also feed them well. There can be a good balance when you are prepared and spend a few moments planning ahead. I’ve seen a huge difference in the flow of my week when I do this. (And I’m not nearly as busy as some moms!)
To help you plan your food prep throughout the week, I have created a weekly meal plan template that includes the prep. But make sure you are subscribed to my newsletter in order to get this free printable!
I also have something really exciting for you. You’ve read several ideas in the series this month on Saving Time in the Kitchen, and I’ve briefly covered several areas that can help you achieve that. But there is more to learn!
I am finishing up an eBook to give you the knowledge for COMPLETE success in saving time and money in the kitchen!
Make sure to come back next week to find out the details of what is in this eBook and how you can be successful in feeding your family real food without spending all your time in the kitchen. It’s gonna be big!
How has Food Prep changed your time in the kitchen?
View the rest of the series:
Take the next step in create an efficient kitchen here.
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