Spending just a little time at the beginning of the week on keto meal prep can make staying on track easier, especially for those with a busy life. You’ll find five easy tips for meal prep in this post that don’t take a lot of time.
5 Easy Keto Meal Prep Ideas
Since starting Keto over two years ago, I have found that a few low carb meal prep steps make life easier. I start each week by creating a keto meal plan for our dinners, followed by grocery shopping. It makes it easier to stay on track when life gets hectic. We also stick with simple, family-friendly keto meals without a lot of elaborate ingredients.
What is the Keto Diet Plan?
If you are looking to start a Keto/Low Carb eating plan, this guide to getting started on keto is a fantastic resource complete with a printable shopping list. Research is the first step in making a successful lifestyle change. Once you have a clear understanding of the ketogenic diet and what you should eat, you’ll get more comfortable making food choices.
What Can I Eat on the Keto Diet?
The keto diet is high in fat, moderate protein, and low in carbs. When you follow this type of eating, your body depletes its glycogen stores and begins burning fat for energy. This is why the ketogenic diet is high in healthy fats like coconut oil, olive oil, grass-fed butter, and various fatty meats. A Keto Diet Foods Shopping List printable is helpful to keep on hand for grocery trips.
You may experience undesirable side effects at the beginning, like the keto flu, which is typically short-lived and can be minimized with electrolytes. The positive health benefits of being in ketosis are losing weight, higher energy levels, and consuming less processed foods and added sugar.
Don’t Miss Any New Keto-Friendly Recipes
What is Keto Meal Prep?
Mainly it is planning and cooking or prepping a meal or meals in advance to enjoy later. With busy schedules and a full plate of life, many people find that spending several hours in the kitchen one day a week saves them a considerable amount of time later and helps them to stay on track.
I don’t prep a lot of meals in advance, but I am mindful of ways I can take easy keto meal prep steps that won’t take a huge commitment of time but will be helpful later. In this post, I’ll share my top easiest keto meal prep ideas.
1. Keto Meal Prep Tip: Weekly Keto Meal Plan
Each week I loosely meal plan our dinners. Once my keto meal plan is ready, I make a grocery list to coincide with what we will be eating that week. To simplify further, I often grocery shopping online. You can find an extensive list of keto recipes in my keto/low carb recipe index. For those who need a weekly meal plan for inspiration, you can find all of the past keto meal plans in one helpful resource.
2. Keto Meal Prep Tip: Brown Ground Beef in Advance and Freeze
I had mentioned that I keep ground beef already browned in the freezer on facebook recently, and I couldn’t believe how many people commented thanking me for the tip. I always have ground beef browned in the freezer for days that end up more hectic than I had expected.
How to Brown Ground Beef in Bulk:
I buy several pounds at a time and cook all of it at once in a tall stockpot on low. Next, I set my timer for 20 minutes, then when the timer goes off, I stir the ground beef with my ground beef chopper tool and reset the timer for 20 minutes. I do this every 20 minutes for about an hour or until the ground beef is cooked through. Once it is browned, I divide the ground beef into freezer-safe Ziploc bags and store them in the freezer.
3. Keto Meal Prep Tip: Cook bacon in Bulk
If you go through bacon as we do, then you know how much easier it is to cook several pounds at once. There are many different ways to prepare bacon, but my personal favorite is to bake it on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. It bakes very nicely without me needing to tend to it. The cookie sheet doesn’t get greasy, and clean up is easy, which is a bonus.
4. Keto Meal Prep Tip: Wash & Prep Produce after Grocery Trip
It is easy to buy fresh produce with great intentions only for it to spoil in the fridge. As soon as we get home from the grocery store, I wash all the produce at once. I fill my sink with approx four parts water to one part vinegar and soak the veggies for a few minutes. After washing, I rinse and lay all the vegetables out to dry on a large towel on my counter.
How Meal Prep Saves Time
I take into consideration what I plan on cooking that week and prep veggies for recipes. For example, if Chicken Lombardy is on the menu for the week, I will go ahead and chop the mushrooms and onions then store them together in a container in the fridge. Then, when it is time to prepare the meal, the veggies are already ready. I store fresh produce in individual containers or Ziploc bags for easy access.
At the end of the week, my goal is to use up all of the produce in my fridge by roasting whatever vegetables are leftover together for a delicious, delicious side dish. By doing so, there is less waste, which ultimately helps us save money on groceries.
5. Keto Meal Prep Tip: Keep it Simple & Don’t Overstress
One thing for sure is I am not the Keto police. I have learned that, for me, I have to keep life simple and choose my battles. I don’t freak out about a packet of ranch seasoning used sparingly here and there. My best advice is – you, do you as you find healthy meals you love. Make the best decision that will help you stay focused. Most of us have busy lives, and finding ways to eat healthy without causing undue stress is key to long-term success.
What Kind of Snacks Can You Have on Keto?
It is best to only snack when necessary because each time you eat, it creates an insulin response in your body. However, sometimes, it might not be feasible to wait for the next meal. In these cases, there are many keto snack options to tide you over until the next meal. Keep in mind, that too much snacking may cause you to stall, so be mindful of portions. Struggling with hunger between meals may be an indicator that you need to add more fat at mealtimes for satiation.
My Favorite Simple Keto Kitchen Tools:
- Instant Pot – fantastic for cooking chicken or boiled eggs in bulk
- Ninja 4-in-1 Slow Cooker – I love that it has a slow cook and a stovetop function
- Waffle Maker for Keto Breakfast Prep – Make a huge batch of waffles and freeze for later
- Chaffle Maker
- Cast Iron Skillet
- Parchment Paper & Parchment Paper Muffin Liners
- Food Storage Containers
Easy Low Carb Breakfast Recipes for Keto Meal Prep
Breakfast is an easy meal to prep ahead. Simply make a keto breakfast casserole, a batch of keto muffins, hard-boiled eggs, or pancakes/waffles to enjoy later. It is always smart to cook extra so that you always have leftovers on hand. The recipes below are quick, easy, and delicious.
- Keto Breakfast Bake with Ham, Eggs, & Cheese
- Light & Fluffy Keto Waffles (this recipe makes a big batch)
- Mouthwatering Keto Sausage Balls (I always make a double batch and freeze half)
- Keto Mixed Berry Muffins
- Easy Keto Chaffle Recipe
Keto Soup Recipes are Fantastic for Keto Meal Prep
I often make a big pot of soup at the beginning of the week for lunch. Even with four kids at home, soup generally lasts for several days and often tastes better leftover as it gives the flavors more time to merge. Here are a couple of our favorite keto soup recipes.
- Rich & Creamy Keto Chicken & Cauliflower Rice Soup
- Instant Pot Keto Chicken Taco Soup Recipe
- Queso Keto Taco Soup Recipe
- Keto Broccoli & Cheese Soup
Easy Low Carb Casseroles for Keto Diet Meal Prep
Casseroles are fantastic for easy keto meal prep for beginners, especially. Often, casseroles make 9-12 servings, so most people will naturally have leftovers. In this case, when you make dinner, you are also prepping for meals later that week since you know in advance there will be leftovers.