GC’s Guide to Meal Prep for College Students

Story by Lexi Carter
Photo by Anne Langan 

Instead of spending your Sundays vegging out, watching football and sleeping, try to spend your day getting in the healthy mindset with meal preparation for the upcoming (and probably hectic) week. Not only does food prepping make your week more organized, but it helps develop healthy eating habits for the rest of the year.

So, get out your tupperware, and start planning your meals for the week ahead.

It Starts at the Store
Accomplishing a successful food prepping week beings with grocery shopping for the right food and ingredients for every single meal. This involves planning what you will be eating every single day for the rest of the week. Write down what you will be eating for breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner, then breakdown the list of ingredients you need to make those meals happen. When planning your week, it’s also important to think about food that won’t go bad over the course of the week and will be able to sit in your fridge.

If this is your first time with meal prep, prep food a few days at a time until you feel confident prepping for the whole week. By doing this in the beginning of the week, you’re able to see everything you’ll be consuming.

How to Prep
Prepping your food can be done in so many different ways and you have to find the things that work for your tastes.

With that said, when you meal prep for an entire week, it’s going to take a while to get all your food cooked. Whether you want to cook all the components of a meal at once or split it up into days, dedicate time out of your schedule to stocking meals for the week.

Why Meal Prep?
The benefits of meal prep are endless, but one of the best benefits is the time saved. Even though it takes a lot of time to prep, it takes the time off from cooking the rest of the week. As college students, it’s not abnormal to be so busy you have to sacrifice a meal or two, but with food preparation, you’ll already have your dinner prepared for you on those days you don’t have time to cook.

Not only are you saving time, but you’ll also be able to see exactly how many calories you are putting into your body on a daily basis. If you’re focused on muscle gain or weight loss, you can see how much energy you have going in and out of your body. As a result, you’ll have more insight on portion control.

Find What Works for You
Meal prep can be different for each person. It takes trial and error to find the way that best fits your lifestyle, whether it’s prepping for the whole week, half the week or finding a completely new way to do it.

Experiment with meal prep, and become easier to live a healthy, more organized lifestyle.