It has been one of those days! You know what I’m talking about, long workday, then shuttling the kids to all of their after school activities. The last thing I want to think about is cooking dinner but we gotta eat, right?!

Some nights fast food or a pizza is just unavoidable. Eating out all of the time can be a budget killer, not to mention not so healthy most of the time.

With a little pre-planning and prepping on the weekends, you can get dinner on the table in no time. Your bank account and waistline will thank me later.

Here are some meal prep tips and tricks that are time savers:

Meal Plan/Grocery Shop Once a Week

I can’t even explain to you how much I hate and dread grocery shopping. I’m telling you I would rather scrub the toilets! For this reason, I plan our meals for the week and grocery shop only once a week.

In reality, it does save so much time during the week when I don’t need to make 4 trips to the grocery store. It also saves us money because I definitely fall victim to impulse purchases. I always know what we are going to eat so it’s not the dreaded 5 o’clock “what’s for dinner?!”

Prep and cook chicken

Poach, grill, or cook chicken breasts however you like to cook them. Only season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper so they are more versatile and you can use them in many different recipes. Just season them appropriately when you use them.

Shred or chop the cooked chicken and store it in the freezer until you are ready to eat it.  Some ways to use your cooked chicken: add to soups or salads, quesadillas or fajitas, wraps with lettuce and croutons and dressing, or chicken salad sandwiches.

Chop veggies

Let’s face it, chopping vegetables can be so time-consuming. This step can make or break whether you can get dinner on the table quickly.

Chop/dice all or some of the vegetables that you will need for the recipes you chose for the week. You can get dinner made quickly when you don’t have to take the time to chop the ingredients.

Utilize your crock pot to make easy desserts

We all love a little sweet treat at the end of the day. We don’t have dessert every night of the week, but I do plan a few desserts for the week. The easiest desserts are crock pot desserts! Most people don’t think about using their crock pot to make dessert, but it works out great. Try our 4 Ingredient Crock Pot Apple Spice Cake.

Make some energy bites or muffins

Make a favorite recipe and freeze them in individual portions. You can then use them for quick snacks on the go or throw them in your kid’s lunchbox. Here is our favorite energy bite recipe. And here is a Lemon Blueberry Muffin recipe that is delicious.

Hopefully, these tips and tricks can help you get dinner on the table in a jiffy! If you put in a little work on the weekends, I promise it will pay off during the week. Happy Cooking!!