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Meal Preparation Problems and How To Solve It

Eating healthy isn’t exactly an easy task, but it’s something that we really need to do if we want to keep ourselves in shape. The biggest problem that I see a lot of us encounter that hinders us from eating healthy is because of meal preparation.

Back then, I wasn’t so fond of spending hours in the kitchen every day. I felt like I had more important things to do. Everything changed when I decided that I wanted to keep eating healthy and I realized that I can only achieve that if I really take the time to prepare my meals with ample variation. Since then, I decided that I have to be creative with my approach. Let’s just say that I’ve become a self-proclaimed meal connoisseur after a few months of doing this! Definitely an achievement, for me.

However, most of us would always have reasons and excuses for why we will choose not to spend a few hours in the kitchen even on a Sunday in order to prepare for a healthy week ahead. So, I want to share with you the extra push that I needed in order to get myself cooking in the kitchen. Below, I will state the problems that I encountered and how I managed to solve it.

Meal Preparation Problems and How To Solve It

#1 Problem: Little to no variety.

This is self-explanatory. Nobody wants to eat the same thing 5 days in a row. Not only will I not enjoy every meal that I’m eating, but it will really discourage me on this journey of staying healthy. However, nobody really has the time to individually prepare 15 different meals in one day for the week ahead. That would require me to stay in the kitchen for almost the entire day and that’s not fun at all.


Cook at least 2 breakfast options and at least 4 lunch and dinner options for the next 5 days. Consume this back to back in order to break free of repetition. Make sure that the taste varies, a savory and sweet option may be a good way to start. Take note of the bases of your meals as well, you may want to stay away from flavors that are too similar to each other for your options.

#2 Problem: It’s expensive to be cooking for just one person.

For those who are married, in a relationship or those who live with friends may find it easier to cook in batches. However, for those who live alone, it can be such a pain because you can’t really buy your ingredients in small batches.


Make sure that the ingredients that you’re going to buy can be frozen and can still be good for future use. This can even save you time for the next few weeks if you can find a way to use it for a different meal.

If you don’t like this idea, you can always find a friend or a co-worker who has the same food tastes as you. You can both agree to shop together and take turns in cooking for each other. That way, on some days that you don’t feel like prepping your meals, you can always call someone else to do it for you and vice versa.

Meal Preparation Problems and How To Solve It

#3 Problem: The overwhelming grocery store.

We’ve all experienced this. There was a time that I went to a grocery store, really excited, thinking that I would breeze my way through the aisle and be able to pick up healthy options for my weekly meal preparation. I had big ideas in mind, only to find out that after about 2 times of going back and forth, I only had about 5 things in my cart.


Make a list and never go to the grocery unprepared. This meal preparation 101 is all about planning beforehand and that’s what’s going to make it successful. Having a list saves you time strolling around the grocery aisles for things you need and don’t need. The best thing about pre-planning the ingredients is that you can make sure that you really have meal variations throughout the week. Two birds in one stone!

#4 Problem: My weekends are for fun and travels, not cooking!

Yes, I know. Weekends are sacred for most of us because it’s probably the only time that we get to enjoy the things that we couldn’t do during weekdays because of work-related stuff. It’s probably the only time that you get to enjoy your hobbies or anything that you enjoy doing (that includes resting too!). But the thing is, we have to get past this idea and motivate ourselves that meal preparation is really important if we want to have a healthy lifestyle.


Whenever you’re feeling up for it, double or triple your meal preps to make up for days that you know you can’t afford to go the extra mile and cook. We all have days wherein we’re feeling extra and days wherein we’re feeling like we don’t want to do anything at all. Make the most out of the good days!

Meal Preparation Problems and How To Solve It

#5 Problem: Leftover food or too little food.

Wasting food is like wasting your effort when you prepared the meals beforehand. Your first few weeks would be a trial and error with the portions. You can either end up with too little food or too much food and that’s normal.


Master the art of creating another meal with leftovers. Maybe you can whip up some porridge or add dry ingredients to a salad? Be creative!

Now, there’s barely any excuse left for you not to have healthy eating habits.

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  • Randie Cadiogan says:

    I’m the type of person who can’t do this, but as soon as I read your solutions, maybe it’s doable. MAYBE.

  • Nadia Lawrence says:

    Interesting. This is really a problem of mine as well. I want to eat healthily but I just don’t have time to do it!

  • Helena Sanders says:

    This sounds easier than I expected. I just have to a lot a day or two for preparation and I’d be good to go for the entire week. I’m just a little curious about the freshness of each meal since anything that has veggies are bound to get soggy.

    • Camilla N. says:

      Separate the veggies from the soup, if that’s what you’re asking.

  • Joyce Scott says:

    Very helpful! This way, I could really enjoy healthy stuff within the week. I usually get so tired as soon as I get home so I end up ordering take-out which is bad.?

  • Nadine Clinton says:

    I actually find it cheaper to be doing groceries in big batches and when a meal is properly planned. Why? When you have a list, you’re bound to stick to that and you won’t pick up stuff from the grocery store that you wouldn’t exactly be eating.

  • Genesis White says:

    The problem with me is that I’m not consistent. I could probably do this for a week or so but long-term… I’m not sure.

    • Bruce Irving says:

      Well, if you really want to eat healthily, don’t make excuses!

  • Erica Gray says:

    My friends are as lazy as me so I don’t think that I can ask them to do this with me. I could ask them to pay me for it, but I’d rather cook for myself.?

  • Melanie James says:

    I do like repurposing leftovers. For dry leftovers, I can just toss them into the pan with some brown rice and create some sort of chaofan.

  • Janice Hendricks says:

    I think this can also save money if done properly.

  • Alexis Clarkson says:

    Uhm, it’s better to sacrifice one day of my weekend rather than cooking every day. The solutions here makes it all sound better than how I imagined.

  • Claudette Hobbs says:

    My fridge would now be full of microwavable containers. ?

    • Sarah Parker says:

      Microwaving your food sounds like the easiest option, but tossing it back on the pan is safer.?

  • Katrina Serano says:

    I’m definitely going to enjoy the solutions listed here. It really makes it all easier now. Thank you so much for the tips.?

  • Kristin Huzar says:

    This has definitely given me all the solution to my meal prep problems. Now all I have to get rid of is the fact that I get lazy sometimes!!

  • Chanelle Gregory says:

    I also have the same experience of going to the grocery store. It was like the moment I went inside I had this dream of filling up my cart only to end up with junk food and no healthy food at all.?

  • I find that planing my meals ahead gives me no excuse to not eat healthy. Planning ahead does make the grocery shopping easier too.

  • If we don’t want to make an effort, we can never be able to eat healthy. We really have to stop making excuses for everything.

  • It’s just a matter of sacrificing a few minutes or hours in the kitchen to make sure that we’re eating healthy for the entire week.

  • Unplanned meals and grocery trips are the worst. I end up shopping for things that I don’t need and end up not getting the things I really need.

  • This is what I need right now. I badly needed a kickstart to healthy meal preparations. I was trying to weigh the pros and cons and meal prep is really getting in the way of me eating healthy.

  • Laryssa Oliveira says:

    Whenever I would make my daughter’s meals, I always plan ahead of time. It saves a lot of time doing emergency grocery trips too. I’m also assured by the fact that I know that I’m making my kid eat healthy food.

  • Let’s face it, meal prep is hard but you just have to overcome it if you really want to achieve something. Just like in any fitness journey, nothing will come easy.

  • Motivate yourself to really do it if you want to eat healthy. It has to be a commitment too, because you can’t just do it for a week and stop just because you hate doing it. I think if you do this for a month straight, it becomes easier the next month because you got used to it already.

  • Holly Morrison says:

    After reading is, I already started drafting my meal plan. I also had to do a little research on what are the seasonal fruits and veggies that I can use, so that I don’t end up drafting a plan with food items that are not on season.

  • I actually love including a trip to the farmer’s market during the weekends. It’s the best way to eat fresh finds for the entire week.

  • Planning can make everything easier. It’s what I normally lack. As a start, it was planning that I had to do religiously do. The moment that weekend comes and I haven’t planned anything for the next week, I’m doomed.

  • Leftover food is actually fine. You can always just keep it and eat it again tomorrow. It’s better than preparing less food.

  • It’s all in the mind really–these things about meal preparation. If you like what you’re doing or if you really want what you’re doing, there won’t be any problem at all.

  • Julia Morrison says:

    I live alone but my friend and I cook in batches alternately.

  • Madison Doyle says:

    The worst thing that you can do is stop eating healthy just because you feel too lazy. Don’t tell yourself “Oh, it’s cheat day.” Because you will feel like it’s okay to not eat healthy anymore.

  • My weekdays will suffer if I don’t at least sacrifice the weekends for cooking. It’s not like it’s the entire weekend anyway. It’s just a few hours!