Back to school means getting back to a routine that works for you and your family. Often that also means planning school lunches, snacks, and quick dinners that you can easily make at home.
In my holistic health coaching program, spending time and energy on home-cooked meals becomes the bane of almost all my clients. Many people think the visual of rows of packed food containers at the beginning of the week slows down meal prep.
But I like the idea of shifting your mindset to meal planning. Simply think about your meals for the next few days and come up with a practical plan to take the guesswork out of the week.
Here are three practical tips to try.
1. Stock up on staples
If grocery shopping often feels like a chore, set aside time to stock up on the basic items needed for most home-cooked recipes.
Some staples I recommend include brown rice, whole grain noodles, high-quality oils, a variety of spices, frozen vegetables and fruits, nuts and granola. Spend less time shopping for groceries and focus on buying fresh ingredients.
2. Build prep time into a habit
If you have an item that you normally choose to base your meals on, such as rice, try cooking more of this early in the week.
Other items like hard-boiled eggs can also be made in bulk for a quick snack.
For example, it takes a few minutes to dice an onion and garlic, slice a lemon, and save for quick use later in the week.
Finally, what else can you do in this time slot? Turn on a podcast, listen to music, invite the kids to help, or be in the kitchen with you.
3. Takeaway breakfast
Consider things you can easily pop in the oven, throw in mason jars, or eat on the go to give yourself more time to get ready in the morning and get to school. , which includes a variety of egg cups, overnight oats, chia seed pudding, yogurt cups, and banana and peanut butter pinwheels.
An easy way to start meal planning is to sit down with your family or home and think about how many meals you want to cook at home each week.
This is an important step in planning your week to determine your groceries and proactively choose healthy takeout options in advance. By taking the time to think about it, write it down, and invite the kids into the conversation, you can start a habit of starting meal planning together as a family.
Livia Marati is a women’s holistic health coach and founder of the Ina Wellness Collective. Any questions or comments for her?