Getting meals right during the holidays can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be a difficult task. The following are a few tips to help you meal prep and breathe a bit.

Use a Calendar

The first thing you should do is use a calendar to your advantage. This is important because the holidays can strip you of time in more ways than you might imagine.

There’s holiday shopping to worry about, and you’ve got to worry about those events you have to attend. Jot down everything on your calendar, and you’ll be able to see your free days. Use those days to do your meal prep for the week.

Smart Shopping

Everything is becoming more efficient, thanks to all the technology out there. You can take advantage of that in many ways including grocery store shopping.

Meal prepInstead of just going to the store or spending time creating a shopping list from scratch, use a smart system like the one offered by PlateJoy to help you shop smarter. This online tool will take into account what you have in your kitchen and what you want to cook that week. The tool can even shop online for you and have things delivered to your home if you want. This meal prep planning can ensure you only buy healthy food, which is especially important during the holidays.

No More Than a Week

You might be tempted to make more than one week’s worth of food since your time is limited, but fight that urge.

The chances of doing something at the last minute during the holidays is high. A friend may show up who you haven’t seen in years. This friend may be around for a few days and may want to take you out to eat. Try to give yourself a little wiggle room so that you can accept those spontaneous moments without any worries.

Think of Splitting the Meal Prep

Many times, the time spent on cooking a meal involves doing a lot of prep work like chopping up vegetables or peeling others.

If you have something big planned, then consider splitting some of the work up so that by the time you’re ready to cook you don’t have much to do. Now, don’t prep too early during the week unless you are going to freeze the ingredients after you prepare them.

Make Breakfast at Night

One meal that can slow you down as you start your day is breakfast. You can’t just get up and go because skipping breakfast can drain your energy, and the meal you eat has to last a few hours.

The good thing is there’s a trick to make this part a little easier, which is making it the night before. You can make porridge or oatmeal the night before, or you could make some delicious healthy bran muffins that can be eaten in the morning. The choices are endless, and it’ll ensure you can start your day even faster during the holidays.

Stay as Simple as Possible

It might be tempting to do something special over the holidays, but you may want to avoid the extras. You don’t have time to experiment, and if your experiment fails, then you’re sort of stuck with it. You want to stick to the meals you know.

By preparing these meals, you know everything will be easier. You know how to season these meals, and you don’t have to worry about a recipe that will make meal prep more stressful. Be sure you stick to simple recipes rather than recipes that could take hours to prepare, even if you feel comfortable with them, because those suck too much time from you.

Use That Slow Cooker

There’s no better time to bring out that slow cooker. This gives you the opportunity to cook all sorts of foods without you being awake to cook it. All you have to do is the prep work, season, and turn on your device.

You’ll wake up to a fully prepared meal that could last you a week if your slow cooker is big enough. Look up some recipes, and you’ll find all sorts of meals you can cook, from soups to chili and much more.

You know what to do to make meal prep a little easier even during the holidays. Try to involve your whole family so that all of this doesn’t fall on your shoulders alone.

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Guest Writer

This post has been curated by a Longevity Live editor for the website.

The content in this editorial is for general information only and is not intended to provide medical or other professional advice. For more information on your medical condition and treatment options, speak to your healthcare professional.