A large part of weight loss has to do with the meals you eat. If you're not getting the right combination of slow carbs, fast carbs and proteins, you'll have a hard time meeting your goals. However, creating a fat-loss plate can be difficult if you're not a fan of cooking. To keep your meals exciting and easy, here are some kitchen shortcuts you can use for faster meal preparation.
Buying fresh fruit and veggies can seem like a waste if you don't use them in time. Dealing with rotten produce is frustrating, so take care of this problem by freezing your fruits and veggies before they go bad. Chop up onion, pepper and other vegetables you don't think you'll use any time soon and place them in plastic bags. These will keep up to two months in the freezer. To keep track of how long they've been frozen, write either the date you put them in the fridge or the day they should be thrown out. With these bags on hand, you'll be able to save money on produce and have a pre-cut ingredient whenever you need it.
Certain fruits can also be saved this way, such as berries. However, be careful with bananas. The cold will turn them black - if you like making banana bread, though, this is the perfect way to save your over-ripe fruit.
Use seasoning packets
Trying to mix your own seasonings for a dish can take a long time. You have to dig through the cupboards to find all of the spices you need and then measure them out into the right quantities. Seasoning packets take away the hassle of cooking by letting you quickly add flavor to your meal. A few types of packets you should stock up on include taco and Italian seasoning, as well as beef stew and ranch dressing mix. Peruse the seasoning packets at the grocery store to consider what else you might want to make.
Pull out the slow cooker
When you get home at the end of the day, one of the last things you want to do is take 30 minutes or longer preparing dinner. Slow cookers take care of this dilemma by having a meal ready and waiting for your arrival. For many slow cooker recipes, all you have to do is mix all of the ingredients together and leave the dish to cook most of the day.
Before work, pick a recipe that will help you reach your weight-loss goals. This could be beef stew, chicken noodle soup or a variety of other meals. Whichever you choose, you can relax at work knowing you won't be heating up a frozen dinner when you get home.
Prepare for the pan
Buying certain food items in bulk is a great way to save money and always have the ingredients you need for recipes. Meat in particular is an easy item to purchase all at once. Keep an eye on the grocery store's meat sales, and then buy large quantities of hamburger, chicken and pork. When you get home, instead of sticking all of these straight into the freezer, take the time to divide them by pound. This way, when a recipe calls for one pound of beef, you can simply grab a bag out of the freezer.
Buy ready-to-go ingredients
The next time you're at the store, instead of buying whole garlic bulbs, purchase a jar of minced garlic. This simple shortcut will save you a lot of time when making a meal - no more laboring to peel and dice the ingredient. Take some time to consider what else you can buy that's already ready to go. Another idea might be frozen bags of vegetables and berries. You can quickly add the veggies to a stir fry dish or make a morning smoothie with your other produce.
Implementing these kitchen shortcuts will make preparing your weight-loss plates a lot easier and less tedious. If you enjoyed these tips, check out the Food Lovers Fat Loss System for other great ideas.