Whatever life you’re living, I’m sure that you could use some healthy meal prep ideas!
Now there are easy and cheap meal delivery services, but are you looking for ways to make your own food? It’s a great way to save money and eat healthier!
You might be thinking meal prepping takes way too much time and effort. Well, luckily, there are solutions like my Monthly Meal Planner that make meal planning for the week easier than ever.
41 Healthy Meal Prep Ideas
When I first got into healthy meal prep ideas, these were my favorite protein-packed breakfast go-to- and grab-and-go breakfast!
They are packed full of veggies, and you can change up the seasoning as you want.
To put them over the top, I would add chunks of avocado and top with hot sauce for a kick. You can’t beat these for breakfast for around 50 calories a muffin.
Gone are the days when you’ll need to stop at a coffee shop or McDonald’s for your soggy breakfast sandwich or a boring bagel to eat in the car.
Grab one of these hearty containers from your fridge, warm it up while you make your cup of coffee, and enjoy!
If they can sell breakfast bowls at the grocery stores, then you have no excuse why making one isn’t a great idea!
Now you can have yourself a hearty scrambled egg breakfast even on busy mornings, even when you’re running super short on time!
These might be the ultimate family egg breakfast meal prep idea, because you can easily adjust what size your bites are, making larger ones for adults and smaller ones for little kids.
Just put a few of these warm bites in a Ziploc bag, and your kids can have a great grab-and-go breakfast as they run out the door in the morning!
We are all busy! That is why meal prepping is so perfect for people on the go. These overnight oats can be prepped in mason jars the night before.
Overnight oats can have so many different flavors and combinations that can be mixed together, making overnight oats protein-packed, quick and easy breakfast.
I’m a big fan of PB&J, strawberry cheesecake, brown sugar cinnamon, nd chocolate peanut butter overnight oats!
Who knew that eating a healthy breakfast could taste so sweet? I love the combination of chocolate and banana. You will not even be able to taste the oatmeal.
If you have not used quinoa in your recipes yet, you need to! I love quinoa and all of the health benefits it has to offer!
Make this healthy breakfast for the week and portion them out for your work week. They could even be enjoyed as a healthy dessert if you are craving something sweet.
Smoothies are super easy to make meals a week ahead of time, bag, and freeze. In the mornings when I was rushed, I would throw a smoothie mix into the NutriBullet and move on with my morning.
Such a good decision compared to going to a drive-through.
With a little peanut butter for extra protein and an extra creamy finish, these dump-and-go smoothie preps are the perfect way to start your morning!
If you’re lucky enough to have access to a blender during your lunch, then taking one of these with an ice pack would be a great way to get a highly nutritious to-go lunch without spending a fortune at a smoothie shop!
With healthy greens, tons of flavor, and super easy prep, you really don’t have any excuses to not have a breakfast smoothie every day!
These look so delicious as a freshly mixed portion, you might even find yourself having a bowl as a snack or small lunch without blending!
At work, I like the flexibility to hold my lunch and work at the same time #TeacherLiving. These mason jar salads are perfect for lunch.
Great for storage and to hold during lunchtime, and then you can enjoy a hearty salad to get you through the last lap of the day.
I love Wendy’s taco salad. This is a great healthy alternative that you can easily prep ahead of time.
This is a great meatless option for vegetarians as well if you replace grilled chicken with tofu.
Nothing says “weight loss” like eating a hearty salad for lunch every day, but who has time to make a less-than-boring salad on busy mornings before work?
This cobb salad meal prep recipe is sure to taste better than any grab-and-go salad you could buy at a store, too! These are perfect packable lunches you can do just about every day.
You can roast chicken and shred it for this salad, chicken salad sandwiches, chicken noodle soup, and other fast recipes.
When you’re looking for a light but satisfying dish to serve at your next summer party, this hearty salad is exactly what the doctor ordered.
With its refreshing flavors and ample amounts of toppings like tomatoes, cucumbers, feta cheese, and kalamata olives, it’s sure going be one hit among many as a nice lunch salad or hearty appetizer.
I am a sucker for Instant Noodles! How easy is it to place the cup of noodles under the Keurig and have hot soup in minutes?
Those soups are so bad for you and the sodium is insane! This is the perfect option to keep your belly warm and your body will thank you.
Want more healthy meal prep recipes for cold weather besides a classic chicken noodle soup or bean chili? Here’s a hearty soup that’s sure to satisfy any eater!
It’s a perfect recipe to experiment with and make your own – tweak it to be taco or chili flavored, or replace the potatoes with pasta and cheese to make it more like lasagna!
If you’re in love with those instant soup cups but always wish for a little more flavor and spice with them, then here are three versions to make that are anything but copycats of the store-bought cups!
I do not know about you, but we needed some easy, healthy lunch ideas to get our girls to eat better at school.
Pinwheels are such an easy and satisfying lunch option. Have kids? Make these instead of buying Lunchables. #Savvy
If you’ve read other dinner meal prep recipes that we have talked about, you can use ground turkey or ground chicken instead of ground beef for a leaner option.
Not only is it significantly cheaper, but it is also healthier.
Mix it up with different meats. You do not always need to eat chicken every day. You can alternate between chicken and ground turkey to get some variation between your meals.
This is a recipe we’ll definitely have to add to our collection of lettuce wrap recipes! It doesn’t get much lower calorie or lower carb (and tasty) than this!
Valerie over at Valerie’s Kitchen knocked this easy meal prep meal out of the park. The peanut sauce looks divine!
I love the mix of noodles and salad too. Better than ordering Thai out!
Can I just say those vegetables look so good? Stir Fry is an easy weekly meal at our house. We always say we need to make it more often. With meal prepping, we can!
I love one-sheet pan meal prep recipes! How easy is it to cook everything up and divide it between containers?
The meal prep process just got easier! Imagine the clean up for the week is all on one pan and done!
Start getting used to seeing chicken in your meal prep future — it’s cheap, delicious, and incredibly versatile!
This is a perfect example of a meal prep recipe where you could cook the chicken with fewer seasonings but modify it later to fit this recipe!
This is another super healthy meal prep recipe, packed with good nutrition yet easy to make with yummy grilled chicken and pasta.
You could definitely swap out the pasta for anything, making this an awesome recipe choice if you’re looking for meal prep ideas to get toned!
Quite possibly the ultimate meal prep idea to lose weight, this is such a tasty recipe focusing on proteins and veggies, with enough flavor packed in you’d think it was a MUCH higher calorie meal!
Sometimes, it’s the simplest foods that are the tastiest, and grilled chicken is a blank canvas for flavor.
This is a perfect meal prep idea to take to work since it’s filling but still light enough that you won’t spend the afternoon feeling over-stuffed and weighed down!
You need to add this recipe to your list if you’re looking for easy meal prep ideas to save money.
It’s full of healthy veggies, and it’s so much cheaper than ordering out or buying pre-made egg rolls at the grocery store!
Remember eating Lunchables as a kid? Here’s the healthy, grown-up version for ready to eat meals. It’s an ideal meal prep idea for weight loss, and maybe the best part is you can eat it 100% on the go — no microwave required!
While the recipe simply calls for “deli meat,” baking a hunk of ham in the oven and dicing it up for this meal prep recipe would be an even cheaper (and nearly as easy!) way to get the same quality result but with less than half the cost!
Sheet pan meal prep recipes are some of the fastest ones to make because it’s a one-dish bake-and-done kind of deal!
This recipe is full of flavor and nutrition, making it a delicious option for either lunch or an easy weeknight meal.
This is a high-protein recipe that is perfect if you’re looking for good healthy meal prep ideas for weight loss or for building muscle.
Not to mention, it’s super delicious! Like a pulled pork sandwich without the roll, you’ll have a delicious meal that you won’t regret making!
I love that this recipe could just as easily be made with “regular” pasta dishes to make it a slightly heartier dish if you need to, but as-is it’s SUPER healthy and low calorie!
This is a great meal prep idea if you need to meal prep for people who have special dietary preferences or needs.
What would a meal prep ideas list be without a classic ground beef taco salad recipe? My favorite thing about this recipe is that it’s a perfect meal prep idea for kids, too!
All you’ll have to do is brown the ground beef, chop any veggies, and let everyone craft up their perfect dish (plus, you get a little help in the kitchen that way)!
Steak is definitely one of those love-it-or-leave-it meats, but it’s a heartier dish that cna become one of your favorite meal prep recipes (maybe your husband isn’t feeling salads for lunch!).
Cook it all up in a skillet and portion it into containers for a meal that’s sure to make co-workers jealous!
Beef and broccoli are pretty much a staple in our house. It’s affordable, delicious, and SO easy to make!
Served over some white rice is our favorite way to make a simple meal prep idea that we really don’t tire of!
Not only is this meal prep idea a great way to keep your week running smoother, but with such a quick prep time it’s about as close to perfect as you could get!
This recipe is a perfect way to work on getting your veggie servings in for the day, and make a gluten-free meal prep idea!
You could always skip the rice and double the veggies for a meal that’s just as filling but without the carbs!
Looking for a recipe with a little more spice? This recipe has a little bit of a Cajun feel to it, with spicy tomato sauce and hearty peppers and onions mixed with it!
Whip up this quick dish in your trusty skillet, then portion out in containers for an amazing lunch on the go.
Meal prepping at its finest! Make sure you have a good balance of grains, vegetables, and proteins. Buying the pack of salmon can get you through dinner for the majority of the week.
If you’re looking for a meal prep idea with shrimp, you’ll definitely want to give this recipe a try. Something about a dish full of colorful veggies always makes it so much more appetizing!
This can also be changed up into different vegetarian meal prep recipes by making simple swaps like tofu or tofu and changing up the veggies for new flavors.
How to Meal Prep
Now that you’ve got plenty of meal prep ideas let’s talk about walking the walk and preparing meals!
It really doesn’t take much to get started with a weekly or twice-weekly meal prep routine. Really, this is about all it takes:
1. Storage Containers
First things first – you’ll need some good containers to store your meals in!
This set on Amazon is a great starter kit for beginner meal prepping. You can use them in the freezer, refrigerator, and dishwasher!
Alternatively, you could use something like mason jars or Tupperware containers you already have.
2. Make A Shopping List
Plan out your shopping list, taking it a meal by meal. This will help you not only make sure you don’t forget anything for your meals, but it will keep you focused so you can better keep your grocery budget in check.
I created an easy-to-use monthly meal planner that is available for you to use to make meal planning a breeze. You can find a grocery list, sample monthly meals, monthly calendars, weekly calendars and so much more!
3. Consider Buying Time Savers
If you are a beginner meal prepper, you might want to buy frozen or canned fruits and vegetables.
The nutritional value is comparable to fresh veggies and fruits, you’ll have less prep time involved with no longer needing to wash them before use, AND they’re often cheaper than fresh, too!
Something that saves time AND money is a big win!
4. Wash Before Storing
Before you start your actual meal prep, do a little pre-work to make sure that your produce is washed and ready to use, as well as having the containers washed and ready to go.
5. Start Small and Choose Core Recipes
The last thing you want to do is spend time making a bunch of food only to end up wasting it. Choose a handful of delicious recipes that you know you’ll love and can easily spice up here and there for extra variety.
Don’t underestimate the power of buying a store-made rotisserie chicken either – for just a few dollars you can have half the work of meal prep done for you.
It still saves you a TON of money and will help you “get in the groove” of doing weekly meal prep!
6. Make Meal Prep Part Of Your Schedule
Healthy meal prep doesn’t happen if you don’t make time for it.
So to make sure that you can actually get your meals prepped and your week set up to be smoother, make it a point to block out an hour or two every Saturday/Sunday to get it done.
Set a reminder on your phone if you have to!
Quick and healthy meal prep can change your life for the better. If you’re overwhelmed with meal planning for breakfast, lunch, and dinner just focus on one.
Always remember healthy meal prep ideas don’t have to be boring. You can bring variety into your meals, as easily as just changing what meat you use!
We also love using the $5 Meal Plan for easy meal prep recipes sent right to our email each week.