November 11, 2020


When it comes to making healthy choices at meal times and managing our work-life balance, time can often get the better of us, which can lead to making unhealthy decisions. Meal prepping is one of the best ways to reinforce positive eating habits.

Meal prepping allows you to pre-plan meals that include a variety of fresh, whole foods that are crucial in providing you and your family’s bodies with enough energy to get through the day and enjoy life!

I’ve put together my top tips to help optimise the way you integrate meal prepping into your life, which will ultimately save you money, seriously benefit your health, and in turn free up your time that’s far better spent on your loved ones.

Create a weekly menu and shopping list

If you don’t live close to a supermarket, there is nothing worse come meal time than realising you’ve forgotten an essential ingredient to the meal. It can also be quite overwhelming to make a healthy choice when there’s nothing in your fridge and the kids’ tummies are rumbling!

This is where a weekly menu and shopping list comes in handy. By purchasing your weekly shop items once a week, you decrease the total time spent at the shops and you also remove the need for those pesky midweek dashes, which helps to create more time to spend with your family in the evenings.

A weekly menu also increases the likelihood of preparing nutritious meals and additionally helps to reduce food waste! I recommend setting aside a specific time each week when you’re feeling particularly inspired to create your meal plan and shopping list, whether that’s on your own or if it involves the whole family, which doubles as a great way to teach your children about making healthy eating choices!

Choose meals that include a protein, wholegrains and fruits or vegetables

When meal prepping for your family’s weekly menu, try to create balanced meals for each occasion. A balanced meal should include a protein, such as meat, eggs, nuts or beans, a few serves of fruit or vegetables and whole grains like pasta, oats or wholemeal bread.

Having a whole week planned of delicious, balanced meals will ensure that everyone in the family will have enough energy to get through the work or school day and for the fun moments too! 

Take into account you and your family’s lifestyle

If you’re hard-pressed getting everyone out the door in the morning, choose meals that have shorter preparation times. Always look at the method of a recipe and if it’s lengthy, check if it’s freezer-friendly or can be made the evening before, which can be especially helpful for feeding kids in the morning!

As I mentioned earlier it’s important to eat balanced meals for energy, but it’s equally important to plan meals that match you and your family’s energy output too. If you have ravenous teenagers or your kids play a different sport every night of the week, they’ll likely need to eat more protein and carbs to push through the day’s activities.

I also recommend cooking for more than one meal when you can too. If I’m making curry or pasta, for example, I’ll cook enough for the next evening too which completely opens up our evening to enjoy!

meal prepping2

Don’t forget to add a protein-rich snack for when hunger strikes

Don’t forget to account for snack times in your family’s meal plan! If you don’t have healthy snacks on hand, it can be tempting to choose unhealthy options like chips or biscuits.

Instead, opt for a protein-rich snack like fruit pieces dipped into a 100% natural peanut butter like Mayver’s. The protein in the peanut butter will help keep you fuller for longer and tie you over between meals.

My other favourite snacks include a smoothie with a handful of nuts, milk and a banana, a sushi roll with brown rice, peanut butter balls or even whole grain crackers with a nut spread like Mayver’s, cheese or avocado!

In addition to being an ambassador for Mayver’s, Susie Burrell is one of Australia’s leading dietitians, known for her extensive background in both nutrition and psychology and for her practical, easy to understand approach to diet, nutrition and wellbeing. Susie holds a Master’s Degree in Coaching Psychology at Sydney University, loves going on long walks around Sydney and is kept pretty busy with her twin boys, Gus & Harry.

Do you use meal prepping in your life? Do you plan meals or are more spontaneous? Tell us in the comments below.

This article is shared and powered by

  • I like the idea of cooking extra and freezing it!


  • I create a list and work from it throughout the week depending on who is home, the weather, etc.


  • I do meal planning but I have to do it for a month at a time. We live 2 hours from a shop so it does get difficult towards the end of each month.


  • Wonder if those that do meal planning actually write a meal plan out each week ?


  • Love meal prepping and always make out a weekly menu. Thanks for your tips though, they are helpful for anyone starting to do this.


  • I started menu planning and creating my shopping lists from that almost a year ago. It seemed like a lot of work at the start, but it got easier and now it is second nature. It means I don’t waste anything and I don’t spend more than I need to. I also don’t have to stress about what is for dinner, it is written down on the planner…win win.


  • I wouldn’t be able yo get by without meal prepping


  • Love meal prep…it saves me so much time in the week!


  • I do a meal plan each week, and only prep for the just in case we don’t feel like cooking nights. I love knowing our eating plans for the week and no stress thinking of what to have.


  • Absolutely, I do a menu plan weekly and it’s based around that week’s specials plus what I already have in my pantry and freezer. Helps with budgeting plus eating well


  • Yes I plan ahead and buy accordingly. I can’t prep ahead for the whole week as my fridge is too small and has only a tiny freezer compartment and we like it fresh, but some prep’s are always done.


  • Planning does make a difference, and helpful so you don’t always have to start the day, considering what to cook each day.


  • I have tried it, and I have failed at it. Something always happens to spoil my plans


  • I have really upped my game where meal prepping is concerned, especially now after Covid lockdown …. planning the meals for the week enables me to only make one trip to the supermarket (no mid week runs when I find I have forgotten something!) I also make batches of slow cooked meals, like casseroles and bolognaise so they can be frozen for a later date.


  • My meal prep is making a list of what we’re going to eat each day then doing the groceries.
    If I choose relatively easy meals to cook I’ll cook two meals in a day so I have a spare day to catch up on whatever needs doing around the house.
    I don’t cook all my meals for the week in one day like body builders as I can’t stand eating the same thing day after day!


Post a comment
Like Facebook page

LIKE MoM on Facebook

Please enter your comment below
Would you like to include a photo?
No picture uploaded yet.
Please wait to see your image preview here before hitting the submit button.
Your MoM account

Lost your password?

Enter your email and a password below to post your comment and join MoM:

You May Like


Looks like this may be blocked by you browser or content filtering.

↥ Back to top

Thanks For Your Star Rating!

Would you like to add a written rating or just a star rating?

Write A Rating Just A Star Rating