Easy Meal Prep Recipes For Busy Moms

By Variety Fun | June 17, 2019

Meal Prep is a quick and easy way to have a delicious homemade lunch at work every day, especially if you’re finding yourself picking away disinterestedly at a salad from the nearby eatery every day. 

The key to an effortless meal prep practice is minimal preparation and maximum flavor. It could mean making entire meals ahead of time on the weekend, or only pre-cooking some ingredients - chopping veggies, steaming rice and making sauces - to easily throw together an easy delicious work lunch on busy weekday mornings.


Either way, you’ll thank yourself when coming midday, you open your lunch box to a deliciously home-cooked meal that took up next to no time in your morning routine.

If you’re only a beginner in meal planning, gather your mason jars and cutting boards, and here’s our master list of classic (read: easy) make-ahead recipes, and you’ll be an expert in the art of meal prep in no time!


Chickpea Quinoa Bowl


Image source:  Green Healthy Cooking

With fresh and crispy ingredients, ripe cherry tomatoes facing off with crunchy cucumbers, this Chickpea Quinoa Bowl is like a sunny garden in your lunch box. Oversize your portions and this garden salad could also double as a healthy afternoon snack.


Try the recipe here.


Chicken Spring Rolls in a Jar


Image source:  The Girl on Bloor

It may be a cliche, but this meal prep recipe looks as appetizing as it tastes. Lunches in jars are all the rage, and for good reason too! Garnished in green and red, over the creamy white of vermicelli and the earthy tones of chicken, this deconstructed spring roll is easily the most colorful of our easy meal prep recipes. With warm veggies sandwiched between, it is also a healthy alternative to regular spring rolls.


Click here for the recipe!



Greek Chicken Mason Jar Salad


Image source: Organize Yourself Skinny

Seven delicious Mediterranean ingredients in a mason jar, this greek salad recipe is true to this list’s title: the easiest possible meal prep for the week. 30 minutes of prepping on Sunday, and you’ll have yourself a feta-flushed salad with romaine, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and rotisserie chicken all week.


Try the recipe here!


Southwestern Quinoa Mason Jar Salad


Image source:  Photo via Making Thyme for Health

Another easy meal prep recipe (that you don’t need to put in a mason jar, but it does seem more fun that way!) is the Southern Quinoa Salad. Packed with energizing carbs, proteins, and vegetables, this recipe calls for minimal preparation, but maximum refueling when you are tired of sitting at your desk all day.


Try the recipe here!


Asian Style Chicken, Veggies, and Rice




Photo by Recipe Righter

Whether you’re on a health kick or not, this recipe is for the holy trinity of a balanced lunch. Stir-fried veggies and chicken over brown rice, being both tasty and healthy, are the perfect antidote to those midweek fast food cravings. Cut up some carrots (or save time spent over the cutting board on baby carrots at the grocery store), and steam your rice on meal prep Sunday, and you’ll have yourself the homemade version of takeout for Wednesday!


Click here for the recipe.




Sweet Chilli Meal Prep Bowls


Chopping vegetables can be the most tiresome part of cooking, but the satisfying sizzle of the tangy chicken with jasmine rice and carrots in this recipe can make it all worth it. This Thai chicken meal prep takes less than 20 minutes to cook! and makes for an aromatic addition to your regular lunch hour.


Click here for a recipe!


Southwest Sweet Potato Vegan Bowls


Image source: Salt and Lavender

The flavors of the southwest never get old. Try this limey sweet potato meal prep bowl for a few lunches this week - we doubt you’ll tire of it. With carbs, proteins, and a whole spectrum of vitamins, you’ll also have an energizing and healthy work lunch go-to on your hands. You can also try some bean substitutes for easy variations on the recipe!


Try it here.


Chicken Burrito Bowl Meal Prep


Image Source: Kitchen @Hoskins

Stave off those Chipotle cravings by prepping your own customizable burrito bowls. With its luxurious sliced avocados, and melting cheddar cheese on ground chicken, this meal prep recipe is quick and healthy comfort food at its best. Skip the lunch-hour lines, and dig into your Tupperware!


Click for the recipe here.




The Vegan Power Bowl


Image source: Eating Bird Food

Whether you’re abstaining from animal products or not, this vegan power bowl has it all: convenience, health, and flavor. Roasted sweet potatoes and spicy chickpeas go together with just a hint of apple cider vinegar as the perfect midday pick-me-up, especially on dreary desk lunch days. And the best part of all? This meal can easily be prepped in less than 20 minutes!


Try the recipe here!


Greek Chicken Bowl


 Image source: Eazy Peazy Meals

The two most important words for an effortless meal prep practice? Marinated Chicken. This Greek meal prep bowl recipe serves up the most flavorful chicken with cucumber salad and a tzatziki sauce and takes less than half an hour out of your Sunday afternoon. Pre-bathe your chicken in aromatic Mediterranean spices, and opening up your lunch could be like a tiny little vacation to Greece at your desk (hey we take what we can get!)

Click here for the recipe!


Chicken Shawarma Bowl


 Image source: Tastes Better From Scratch

 So far we’ve listed Mediterranean, Southwestern, and Mexican-inspired easy meal prep recipes, but do we have Middle-Eastern? Yes, we do! This Middle-East inspired Chicken Shawarma Bowl takes only a quick 15 minutes to make-ahead but is bursting with all the flavors of its cuisine. At the center of the dish is an easy-to-make garlicky tahini-spiked yogurt that pulls it all together. With this recipe in your meal prep roster, your lunch box can satisfy your halal cart cravings too!

Take a look at the recipe here.



Meal-prep-pastaImage source: Sweet Phi

And if we want to go old school, there is always pasta lunches, which were easy meal prep recipes, before the term meal prep was even coined. Pre-making plain pasta, and combining with a store-bought sauce being the simplest

Try the recipe here!


Whether it’s just lunch at your desk, or in the break room, these quick and easy meal prep recipes will save you the trouble of waiting long lines while hungry, without making your morning routine even busier.


And the best part? These meal prep recipes are as customizable as they are easy! We cheated to make these recipes even easier How do you make these recipes your own - let us know in the comments.





Healthy Lunch and Snack Recipes


More Quick Meal Prep Recipes to Lighten Your Morning Routine:

30-Minute Meal-Prep Recipes So You Aren't Spending Sunday in the Kitchen

13 Make-Ahead Lunches in A Jar That Aren’t Salad

36 Easy Meal Prep Recipes

38 Easy Meal Prep Lunches


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