Planning your meals can be one of the most effective ways to waste less and save more. It means you only buy what you’re actually going to eat and you'll know what you need to make amazing dishes with those leftovers.
But why not take it further and get most of the preparation done in advance, meaning you can whip up tasty meals in no time for the entire week?
With the right storage solutions, it’s easier than you think.
Sometimes the prospect of dicing and slicing is too much after a long day, making it more tempting to pick up a ready meal or order a takeaway. Which can mean produce sitting unused in the fridge and ending up in the bin.
A few simple bits of prep can make all the difference.
Here are our tips for becoming a proper ‘prepper’ and storing tasty, ready-to-go homemade food to help you waste less and make the most of your leftovers.
Bag a smoothie
Prep a week’s worth of smoothies to store in sealable bags in the freezer.
Simply blend a batch of your favourite recipe and freeze individual portions in a cupcake or muffin tray. Once frozen, pop in the bags, store in the freezer and blend as needed.
Box up roast veggies
Klip Lock plastic boxes can store roast veg for up to a week in the fridge, making it easier to use in tasty lunchbox salads and sarnies, and as the base for midweek meals such as pasta sauces and stews.
They’re great for bulking up leftovers, too.
Cook up a couple of trays, splitting the veg by roasting time: cherry tomatoes and mushrooms take around the same time, while butternut squash and carrots take a little longer. Divide into the boxes, leaving a bit of room at the top – and they’re ready to go.
Imagine coming home hungry after a long day and finding someone has already done all the hard work for you. Well, someone has – you!
You did it all on Sunday afternoon, you clever sausage. Store sliced, diced and spiralised veg in Klip Lock boxes or sealable bags and stack in the fridge for super-quick meal solutions.
Having prepped fresh veg to hand makes it easier to transform leftovers, too. Stir fry with last night’s steak or chicken breast? Ready in a flash.
Store up your snacks
Use muffin or Yorkshire pud trays to make a batch of these muffin cup soufflés , which are like mini frittatas. Once cooled, store in an airtight container such as a Klip Lock box or sealable food bag.
They should last for up to five days in the fridge, and you can put pretty much anything in them, from chopped veggies to leftover pasta.
Gain valuable snooze time
Layer Mason jars with rolled oats, dried fruit, nuts and seeds and store on a shelf for the easiest breakfast ever. Simply add boiling water or milk around half an hour before eating, allowing the liquid to soak in for a creamy texture.
You could also stir in cold milk or yogurt and refrigerate overnight.
Use these instant oatmeal jars as a vehicle for any fresh, baked or stewed fruit that needs eating up, too.
Be a grain-iac
Fill airtight plastic tubs with cooked couscous or quinoa to make using up leftovers a doddle. Stored this way, couscous will keep up to three days and quinoa for up to a week.
Roast meat, boiled veggies, stir fries, vats of stew or pasta sauce, leftovers from taco Tuesday, the last spoonfuls of salad – they all become new meals when stirred into some lovely grains.
Liked this? Then try these: