Want to start building muscle and stop eating out? Here’s how to meal prep as a teenager along with some easy meal prep ideas to copy!
Before we start, you should note that this is not dietary advice. These are simply recommendations as to methods for meal prepping.
As a teenager, it may be hard to get healthy food together during school, homework, and other activities.
By the way, having some Tupperware around the house is a must for anyone looking to meal prep and safely store their food.
Hopefully you’ll find something useful from this guide that you can take with you into high school and beyond!
Let’s dive in…
What is Meal Prepping?
Meal prepping is the preparation of multiple meals within one cooking session in order to feed yourself for the next few days.
For example, instead of cooking dinner for one night, you cook 4 nights worth of dinner and store the rest of the meals for later.
Are There Downsides to Meal Prepping as a Teenager?
Meal prepping is always an excellent way to save time in the kitchen as a teenager. However, here are a few downsides of meal prepping to consider:
- Eat the same meals everyday
- No access to car for grocery shopping
- Limited money for food (unless parents help)
Aside from these few downsides (assuming they apply to you at all), everything else about meal prepping is extremely beneficial.
Why You Should Meal Prep as a Teen
Having meal prepped foods for any occasion is always going to be beneficial. Here are a few more benefits to meal prepping as a teen:
- Saves time cooking everyday
- Makes you eat healthier
- Easiest method for building muscle or losing weight
- Reduces the need for fast food
- Lowers stress (not having to worry about meals when busy)
- Saves money
- You’ll learn how to cook better
As you can see, there are tons of benefits on top of just saving some time!
You will ultimately build a better relationship between you and food. You’ll be able to control everything that goes into your body.
That’s why it’s worth it!
Related Post: How to Get Fit as a Teenager
How to Meal Prep as a Teenager
If you’re considering meal prepping, here are a few good steps you should be taking to enhance your meal prep game as a teen…
1) Do the Math
What are your goals with this meal prep? Do you want to lose weight, save money, build muscle, or simply save time?
No matter which options you choose, you should do some basic math to calculate a few factors:
- Grocery costs
These are going to be your 3 main calculations before you do anything else!
How much are you budgeting for groceries (or how much are your parents willing to contribute)?
Are you trying to reach a certain amount of calories per day? If so, you’ll need to know how much food to split up everyday.
If you’re trying to hit a set amount of grams of protein, you’ll have to know which protein sources to get and how much to include in each meal.
It doesn’t take too long to calculate and it will help you with every other step when it comes to meal prep as a teenager.
2) Make a Schedule
The truth is…
Meal prepping takes a good hour or 2 when you actually get in the kitchen and start cooking. It’s hard to fit that into your life without scheduling it in.
Have a set day and time for your meal prep. I will help you organize your time so that you don’t skip weeks.
If you have a planner, reminders app, or any other form of organization, be sure to include meal prep time within your days.
Remember, the whole point of this is so that you don’t have to cook healthy meals every single day.
More on that later…
3) Pick a Protein, Carb, and Fat
It’s almost always important to include all 3 macronutrients into your daily meals. This is a key step to know how to meal prep as a teenager!
Here are a few proteins to choose from:
Here are a few carbohydrates to choose from:
- Hardy Vegetables (potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash)
- Greens (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, spinach)
Here are a few healthy fats to choose from:
- Olive and avocado oil
- Included in other proteins (beef, fish, pork)
By picking 1 item from each of these 3 lists, you can practically make hundreds of different meal prep combinations that won’t get boring!
Use this as a guide to create meals for yourself in the future. Especially since many of the options are cheap and easy to cook!
Related Post: Easy Full Body Workout for Teenagers at Home
4) Split the Work
Meal prepping would be ideal if you could cook once a year and never have to worry about food ever again.
Unfortunately, foods don’t work like that, but it doesn’t mean that it’s a bad thing.
I highly recommend meal prepping twice a week (however you want to fit it into your schedule).
This will split the work into 2, which comes with a few benefits:
- You get to eat different meals
- Cooking takes less time
- You have more flexible times to work with
By easing the workload off yourself, you’ll also have more time to shop for a missing ingredient or work around a busy day.
5) Only Prep Lunch and Dinner
Breakfast is not only hard to meal prep, but it’s also a lot more appetizing to eat breakfast foods when they’re freshly made.
Plus, a lot of teenagers don’t even like eating breakfast too early anyways.
If you just prepare your lunch and dinner meals, you’ll be able to cook less and eat more when you’re the most busy.
Try cooking 2 different dishes at the same time so that your lunch and dinner aren’t the same for the next few days.
Use cooking tools like ovens and slow cookers to your advantage when you want to put in less work.
Related Post: Best Workout Youtube Channels for Teenagers
Easy Meal Prep Ideas for High School Students
Now that you know how to meal prep as a teenager, here are 10 excellent meal prep ideas to copy and make at home…
- Chicken, rice, and veggies
- Ground beef, pasta, and tomato sauce
- Fish, quinoa, and broccoli
- Tofu, noodles, and avocado
- Seitan, pita bread, and salad
- Greek yogurt parfait
- Mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, and toast
- Taco bowls with your choice of protein
- Tuna salad, bread, and tomato
- Chicken, rice, and bean burritos
There you have it! A few good ideas to start with until you get your groove and start cooking your own variations of meals.
Hopefully you’ve learned how to meal prep as a teenager in high school. Don’t forget to make time in your day for it!
If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions leave them down below. Thanks for reading!
I really enjoy your blogs. I forgot I had it bookmarked and remembered why I enjoyed it so much. Your blogs are super engaging and relevant!
Thank you so much for the kind words Jasmine! I’m so glad you enjoy it and please let me know if there’s anything I can help with 😁