10 Keto Meal Prep Recipes Made Easy
Embarking on a keto diet can be quite a challenge. From brainstorming meal ideas to constantly questioning their keto-friendliness, it’s no easy task. But fear not because meal planning and prep are here to save the day! These valuable strategies will give you a helping hand on your keto journey. With meal planning and prep in your arsenal, you’ll find the keto lifestyle becoming much more manageable and enjoyable.
In this article, we’ll explore practical tips to help you prepare ahead, save money, and stay on top of your keto diet. We’ll also provide you with 10 keto meal prep ideas.
What Is Meal Prep, and Why Should You Meal Prep on Keto?
Keto is a high-fat, low-carb diet whose main purpose is to induce and maintain a state of ketosis, which allows your body to burn fat for energy. It has been shown to improve blood sugar levels and help people lose weight.
While the benefits of the ketogenic diet are clear and sought after, many fail to make it work. There are many reasons for this, but one of the main ones is the lack of planning.
Winging it just isn’t going to cut it – the keto diet is highly restrictive, and if you want to succeed, you need to have a plan.
This is where meal prep comes in. Meal prep is the practice of planning and preparing your meals ahead of time.
Dedicating some time on a Sunday evening to prepare your meals for the week ahead will save a significant amount of time that would otherwise be spent deciding what to eat, cooking, and cleaning the kitchen.
Most importantly, you will have a plan which will allow you to stay on track – no counting of pesky carbs on a late evening, no impulsive Chinese takeout, and especially no stress.
There are many different ways to meal prep. Here are some of the most common methods:
- Batch cooking – Preparing a large quantity of food at once, typically on a designated day or during the weekend. This keto meal prep method allows you to portion out your meals for the upcoming week, storing them in containers for easy access and convenience.
- Preparing individually-portioned meals – Instead of preparing food in bulk, you prepare one or two different meals, typically for the next day.
- Prepping ingredients – Washing and chopping vegetables, marinating protein, and storing them in containers. When it’s time for dinner, simply take out the ingredients, and cook. It’s a less time-consuming meal prep method, great for those who don’t have the time to cook in bulk.
Remember, none of these methods is the “correct” one. Experiment and find what works for you.
7 Meal Prep Tips and Tricks
Here are some practical tips and smart strategies to make keto meal prep easy and enjoyable.
Create a meal plan
Before jumping into meal prep, set aside some time to look through recipes and create a structured plan or a general outline of what you will be eating the next week. This will allow you to create a shopping list and save money when going grocery shopping.
Plan for variety
For many, meal prepping means eating the same batch of fried chicken for the entire week. This lack of variety can make it difficult to stick to a keto diet; therefore, in order to ensure a varied and flavorful diet, make sure to experiment and incorporate new recipes when creating your keto meal plan.
Set a day for grocery shopping
Now that you have created a meal plan and have a list of the ingredients you’ll need for meal prep, you can get everything you need for the week. Remember not to stray from your shopping list and avoid impulsive purchases.
Set a day for meal prep
Dedicated prep time will help you establish a habit and make meal planning and prepping a part of your weekly routine.
Stock up on staples
By keeping a variety of keto-friendly staples at hand, you can quickly put together low-carb meals. Some examples of keto pantry staples include olive oil, almond flour, nuts, seeds, and nut butter, among many others.
Meal prep isn’t just about your breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Snacks make up an important part of our diet, and you will be setting yourself up for failure by not including them in your meal plan. Baby carrots, celery sticks, and other low-carb veggies make great keto snacks that require little to no preparation.
Invest in quality containers
Invest in high-quality plastic or glass containers that are both microwave and dishwasher-safe. Look for compartmentalized options to keep your ingredients separate and fresh until mealtime.
How to Meal Prep on a Budget
Meal planning can help you both eat more healthily and save more money.
When you plan your meals ahead of time, you have the opportunity to look for the best deals. Planning your meals around sales will not only help you save money but will also push you to be more creative, especially if you haven’t worked with said ingredients before.
Looking out for sales is also a great way to stock up on pantry staples which can last you a long time and have no problem sitting in your pantry until needed for your keto meals.
In addition, meal planning allows you to explore new ideas and can help you discover new favorite keto meal prep recipes.
Another strategy for meal prep on a budget is to repurpose leftovers. Transform leftover chicken into salads, use cooked ground beef in lettuce wraps, or incorporate roasted veggies into low-carb tortillas. Repurposing reduces waste and adds variety to your meals.
10 Meal Prep Recipes
Preparing a keto meal plan may seem daunting at first; however, there are many keto-friendly recipes you can use to prepare meals ahead of time.
Here are our best keto meal prep recipes we know you’ll love.
A refreshing smoothie is a great way to start your day. Avoid the hassle of blending the perfect smoothie and making a mess of your kitchen by simply making a batch and keeping it in your freezer.
Alternatively, you can store your smoothie in the fridge; however, you will have to drink it within 3 days.
Moreover, smoothies are among the easiest keto recipes, and they can help you outsmart that sweet tooth. Don’t believe us? Try out one of our favorite smoothies for keto – mascarpone, raspberry, and peanut butter smoothie.
In a blender, add all of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Pour each portion into plastic containers, seal them, and refrigerate.
Overnight oats are becoming a staple breakfast meal for many. It’s a cheap keto meal prep recipe that’s easy to make.
Simply mix all the ingredients in a bowl, pour into a container, seal, and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. It is best to let it sit overnight so that more of the nutrients can be absorbed.
You can prepare as many portions as you’d like; however, make sure to keep each portion in separate containers so you can easily grab it out of the fridge and go on your merry way.
It’s a great option for individuals who don’t have time to make breakfast in the morning but still want to have a filling meal that will fuel them until lunch.
When it’s time for breakfast, pour the mixture into a bowl or simply eat straight from the container. Sprinkle some coconut flakes and add a few slices of your favorite fruit – enjoy!
Mornings are hectic. Meal prepping breakfast can save you from grabbing something that’s not keto-friendly. Our breakfast parfait, on the other hand, is a keto-friendly meal prep recipe that makes an excellent little treat for busy mornings.
TIP! For a crunchy parfait, make sure to prepare the base and the topping separately and combine them before serving. Refrigerate, as this will help you keep your parfait nice and crunchy even when you meal prep the night before
If you don’t have time to have breakfast at home, simply take both containers with you, and mix everything together when you’re ready to eat.
Our take on the traditional egg salad makes it an ideal lunch option for those looking for a hearty yet healthy meal. It can be prepared in bulk or portioned into a single meal.
Keep in mind that our recipe is for one serving, so if you’re making a batch of this delicious egg salad, make sure to make 4–5 portions, which will last you for about a week.
Gently grate boiled eggs and combine them with other salad ingredients. Place the salad into a bowl and seal it. Alternatively, portion the salad into smaller containers for an easy grab-and-go.
Lunch meal prep on keto is made easy with our poke bowl recipe.
Poke bowls are great for batch cooking. All you have to do is cook your base, assemble the ingredients, and prepare the protein. You can just prep the ingredients and cook when it’s time for dinner or assemble them into separate servings.
In a container, place your base, such as rice or pasta, then add your protein – in this case, salmon – and top with vegetables. Pour some dressing on top and seal. You can make several batches and keep them in the refrigerator for a week or so.
Wraps are another great low-carb recipe that’s perfect for keto. For a keto meal prep, all you have to do is cook the filling, seal it in a container, and refrigerate.
TIP! Wash lettuce leaves and add them into a separate container. Put a paper towel over the leaves to keep them fresh and crisp for longer.
When you’re ready to eat, simply take a lettuce leaf or two and fill them with ground chicken, creating an impromptu low-carb tortilla. If you have time, reheat the chicken before wrapping it for a warm meal.
Keep in mind that lettuce doesn’t stay fresh and crunchy when refrigerated for long periods of time, so it’s best to save this low-carb meal prep recipe by preparing it the night before and serving it the next day.
Because stroganoff is a one-pot dish, it requires minimal effort to make. This makes our ground beef stroganoff a great recipe for keto meal prep.
To prepare it, simply cook the ground beef, pour the mixture into a container, top it with fresh herbs, and seal.
You can make a big batch, pour it into single-serving size containers, and store it in the fridge or freezer so you have dinner ready when you need it. When frozen, stroganoff can last for up to 3 months.
TIP! Stroganoff can be eaten on its own, but if you take the time to prepare some side dishes, such as roasted vegetables, cauliflower rice, or green beans, it can be even more hearty and delicious.
In reality, you can put almost any meal into a container, refrigerate it, and eat it for the next few days. Some meals may last longer than others, but you can almost never go wrong.
There are many keto meals to choose from. In this case, we recommend trying out our cauliflower fried rice with shrimp recipe, as it makes a perfect addition to any keto diet.
Follow the recipe as normal and, instead of serving and eating it straight away, portion the dish into individual containers, seal them, and refrigerate.
When doing this with your favorite dish, make sure to prepare a larger batch so you can portion it into 5–7 single servings that will last you the whole week.
This tuna salad with walnuts is easy to make and can be served right out of the fridge for an excellent light dinner fitting for a keto diet. It’s best prepared using the ingredient meal prep method.
All you have to do is prepare your ingredients beforehand, wash and chop your vegetables, put them into a sealed container, and refrigerate next to a packet of canned tuna. Place the rest of the ingredients in an easily accessible place.
When you get back from work, all you have to do to prepare dinner is to whip out your ingredients and whisk them together in a bowl. Enjoy!
Shakshuka is a spicy meal that consists of poached eggs in chunky tomato sauce as well as other vegetables and herbs. Shakshuka is relatively easy to prepare, requires few ingredients, and is flavorful and vegetarian-friendly, making it one of the best keto breakfast ideas for meal prep.
Follow the recipe, and once the dish has cooled, put it inside a container and seal it. Shakshuka can last from 3 days for up to a week in the fridge. Although, your best bet is to prepare it for the next day, as poached eggs don’t taste as good once refrigerated.
Before serving, make sure to reheat it on a pan for 5 minutes, and you’ve got yourself a delicious meal.
From smoothies to salads to fried chicken, there are hundreds of keto meal prep ideas you can utilize to save time and money and make your keto journey easier.
Meal prep is a great way to eat healthy food while on a busy schedule. It allows us to sidestep the pitfalls of food cravings, enabling us to stick to the ketogenic diet on a hectic lifestyle.
With meal prepping, your next meal awaits you in the fridge, ready to be reheated and savored within minutes.
Need more keto meal prep ideas? Check out Keto Cycle – a mobile app designed to help you plan your keto journey. Take a quiz to get your personalized plan and start your keto journey today!