I have been on a huge meal prep kick for the past couple months! Now that I know how beneficial meal prep can be, I’ve been doing a lot of research and experimenting to see what works for me.
One thing I’ve been prepping is snacks because, well, I can’t go more than 2-3 hours without eating. Plus I have a 4 year-old, so snacks are pretty much a given at this house. But because I’m a mom and limited on time (as I’m sure you are too), I keep things simple.
Below is a list of the best snacks to meal prep– my top 7 easy snacks that both moms and kids will enjoy, that you can include in your weekly meal prep!
Best Snacks to Meal Prep
There’s something about trail mix that kids just love. Maybe because it’s a bunch of different yummy foods all mixed together. Trail mix is easy to make and can be cheaper too; buying all the ingredients at once might be more expensive, but you get more out of them.
While making your own granola bars may seem intimidating the first time, it really isn’t. I like to think of it as basically trail mix in bar form… with a few other ingredients.
This is the recipe I follow when I make granola bars, because you can mix and match based on whatever you have in the house. It makes a ton, like 24 bars; and they stick together pretty well too, and don’t crumble like other bars I’ve made.
Of course, there’s also no shame in buying granola bars, too! I think it still counts as meal prep; plus, there are some really delicious ones out there.. Allison’s favorite are the Clif Kids bars; I usually buy the big package at Sam’s Club.
If you like the taste of granola bars but don’t feel like making them into actual bars, just squeeze them into ball shapes and you’ve basically got an energy bite. With basic ingredients- oats, honey, and peanut butter- you can roll out some bites pretty easily.
My favorite by far is this Banana Oat energy bite recipe; they end up being a little soft due to the banana, but keep them in the freezer and they become a delicious cold pre-run snack!
I’m not too fond of baby carrots, so I buy bags of whole carrots and just peel and slice them myself into thinner sticks. Slicing your own veggie sticks can save a lot of money and you get more out of what you buy.
Examples of veggies you can prep yourself are carrots, celery, bell peppers, broccoli, and cauliflower. Peanut butter and hummus are great dips to go with them!
Hard boiled eggs
I’ve recently become obsessed with hard-boiled eggs because they’re so easy to make and take with you! Not to mention they’re incredibly cheap. Make 12 at a time and use them in salads or just eat whole.
Pre-portioned snack bags
Does buying a box of crackers or pretzels and putting them into snack bags count as meal prep? Absolutely! That’s cheaper than buying the pre-bagged snacks; not to mention it’ll be a lot easier for your kids to just grab and eat without having to wait for you to pour out a serving each time.
If you want to save money, never under any circumstance buy pre-cubed cheese! A 16-oz bag of Sargento cubes at Meijer costs $5.99; and 2 8-oz blocks of cheese at Aldi costs $3.58.
Cutting cheese into cubes takes almost no time at all. And if your kid is anything like mine, they’ll love the fun cube shapes; and you didn’t spend any extra money on them!
Tips to make snack meal prep a success
- Always keep basic ingredients on hand- If you look in my pantry you’ll see that I consistently have the same items: Oats, peanut butter, honey, chocolate chips, nuts. This allows me to get creative and make basically whatever I want.
- Set aside time every week for prep- Even if it’s just one hour, a little bit of time can go a long way! My time is Sunday afternoons; and it took awhile to make that a habit, but now I can’t live without that time. My whole week goes much more smoothly when I have snacks prepped, veggies chopped, and breakfast made.
- Have the right containers- For bulk prep, I use my regular Rubbermaid containers. I also have snack-size zipper bags and small containers with snap lids that I got at Dollar Tree. Both of those are easy to stick in my purse for portable snacks, kid and mom alike.
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What are your favorite snacks to meal prep for the week? Share in the comments below!
Jaime is a Nutrition Coach and professional writer. She enjoys cooking easy meals, running, and learning more about food.
Jaime specializes in helping women with ADHD learn to meal plan and cook healthier meals without getting overwhelmed.