Tips for Climatarian Meal PreppingSeptember 08 2021
So, you’re ready to begin the switch to a climatarian diet. Although the guidelines of the climatarian diet are simple (Less meat and processed foods; more plants and local ingredients), it can feel a little daunting to begin changing the way you eat.
To help you in your journey, we’ve put together our best tips for climatarian meal prepping. Meal prepping lets you plan out and prepare your weekly meals all at once, simplifying your routine and helping you stick to a new eating habit by making sure there are always plant-based, whole ingredient meals in the fridge.
Focus on Ingredients
Rather than focus on final dishes, think about ingredient components you enjoy that can be a part of multiple dishes throughout the week. This is especially helpful when you’re trying to eat more seasonal fruits and vegetables and reduce food waste. Maybe peaches are finally in season at your local farmers market, so think about a few dishes that you could use them for throughout the week. Do you have two zucchinis in the fridge that desperately need to be used? Use them to inspire the rest of the dishes on your meal plan.
Credit: The Kitchn
Invest in Eco-Friendly Containers
Meal prepping invariably means that you’ll have a fridge full of containers with your meals for the week. Instead of filling up your fridge with plastic tupperware, consider investing in eco-friendly containers that are made of sterner stuff. Stainless steel or glass containers are more durable, easier to clean, and avoid the plastic we know is problematic for the environment.
Shop at Farmers’ Markets
Before you head to the grocery store, stop by your local farmers’ market and see what is in season. Farmers’ markets are an ideal place to buy local produce, support your farming neighbors, and get inspiration for your weekly meals all at the same time. While grocery stores typically always have the same types of vegetables, farmers’ markets are a great source of new and seasonal vegetables. You can get fresh, heirloom tomatoes or try romanesco for the first time.
Farmers themselves are a great source of culinary inspiration, too. Ask the grower how they prefer to eat a certain vegetable they are selling. Many of them even offer recipe cards to their customers.
Make Elements of Meals vs. Finished Meals
If you've ever meal-prepped before, you might have experienced that the meals can get a little old by the end of the week. Rather than putting together 5-6 full meals that you must eat every day to avoid wasting them, give yourself room to mix it up! Prepare a variety of grains, substantial veggies, leafy greens, proteins, and sauces, and store them separately. Then when it's meal time, you can throw together different meals using the ingredients you've prepped in advance.
Credit: Lion's Bread
Make a Spreadsheet
A little organization never hurt anyone! Avoid overwhelm by keeping track of your meal prepping schedule in a spreadsheet. Your spreadsheet can be as simple or complicated as you’d like. You can use different tabs for:
- Weekly meal schedule
- Grocery list
- Favorite recipes (with links)
- A list of ingredients you already have on hand to reduce waste
Each week you can take a quick look at the ingredients you already have on hand, pull from your favorite recipes, mix and match them into your schedule, and you’re ready to go!
Ready to start planning? We’ve created a fresh, delicious recipe to kick off your first week of meal prepping that is sure to make it on your favorites list:
Set yourself up for success by using these tips to kickstart your climatarian diet. Meal prepping and planning out your ingredients for the week will drastically reduce the overwhelm that can occurring when creating a new eating habit, help you use seasonal ingredients to their fullest potential, and simplify the answer to “What am I going to eat today?”