5 Meal-Prep Tricks That Will Help You Avoid Eating The Same Thing Every Day

Five identical bento boxes are only appetizing on Instagram.

July 13, 2017
Meal prep for weight loss
Getty Images

You spend all that work at the beginning of the week getting your meals ready for the days ahead. But chowing down on the same meal every day can lead to major burnout—or worse, takeout. So how can you prep for the week while also keeping things fresh and delicious? We asked Keri Gans, R.D., author of The Small Change Diet, to dish out her best meal-prepping tips to keep your waistline and your taste buds happy.

(Like what you're reading? Sign up for our newsletter to get health insights, clever kitchen tricks, gardening secrets, and more—delivered straight to your inbox.)

Mix Things Up From The Start
Alyssa Zolna

Varying up the meats you’ll use helps add variety to your meals. Reduce the amount of chicken you normally buy and replace it with some salmon and steak. That way, you can grill up that chicken, salmon, and steak at the same time. It’s no additional effort and it gives you options for the week besides just chicken, says Gans.

Related: 7 Foods I Prep Each Week To Make Sure I Eat As Healthy As Possible

Avoid Eating The Same Meats In The Same Day
Alyssa Zolna

Whatever you’ve prepped, don’t eat it twice in the same day—even if it’s in different forms, says Gans. If you have chicken tacos and then a chicken salad later on, you could still burn out on chicken. Since you've still got the rest of the week to go, alternate your meals by meat options and throw in some vegetarian ones, too.

Advertisement
Advertisement
 
Stick To Quick Sides
Alyssa Zolna

Though you'll have your meat prepped for the week, you can keep things fresh my making side dishes on the spot. For example, a sweet potato only takes about six minutes to cook in the microwave, so you can easily add that as a side. You can also buy some single-serve instant brown rice packs to heat up quickly and toss with your meal. Leaving your side dishes to prep right before you eat leaves room for spontaneity, which will make your tastebuds happy.

Related: The 16 Best Weight-Loss Foods At Trader Joe's, According To A Nutritionist

Store Wisely
Alyssa Zolna

Obviously, if you prep all your meats and veggies and divide them into a container for each meal, you end up eating the same thing all week. Instead, store them by type of food—one container for chicken, one for asparagus, one for chopped onions, etc, says Gans. It will be so much easier to mix and match or change your mind if you’re craving a different variation than if you’ve already sorted them by three meals a day.

Related: 6 Things You’ll Have To Give Up If You Want To Lose Weight FOR GOOD

Get Creative
Alyssa Zolna

When you change up the end product of your meal prep (like a cold chicken salad sandwich one day and a hot stir-fry on another), your taste buds might not register both contain the same ingredients, says Gans. Plus, you likely have some staples (such as Greek yogurt for the sammie or soy sauce for the stir fry) in your fridge or pantry to make the switch a seamless one.

The article 5 Meal-Prep Tricks That Will Help You Avoid Eating The Same Thing Every Day originally appeared on Women’s Health.