It seems like all my friends subscribe to some sort of meal prep delivery service. The idea appeals to me, but the price of what they cost is what deters me from signing up for one. They all seem to have a great “intro” price but after that honeymoon period, a few meals a week is more than what my weekly grocery bill is. I understand why people subscribe to them though. Half the battle of making daily meals is the planning. What to make, what to buy, how to prep. It’s exhausting just thinking about it. It’s time to say goodbye to leftover letdowns, multiple supermarket trips, and exhausting weeknight recipes. America’s Test Kitchen has the answer with their new meal prep cookbook.
The Ultimate Meal-Prep Cookbook, features 25 thoughtfully curated, absolutely doable weekly meal plans that take the stress and guesswork out of dinner planning, grocery shopping, and ingredient prep. From comfort foods and lighter, healthful fare to one-pot meals and globally inspired dishes, there are a range of flavors, cuisine types, and cooking methods. Plans are introduced with a handy guide that contains a grocery list (with a maximum of only 12 ingredients!), ingredient prep-ahead and make-ahead lists, and ingredient substitution information that helps you customize meals to your tastes and what you have on hand. They developed the recipes to minimize your active cooking time to 45 minutes or less. You won’t have to worry about leftover ingredients or food waste; recipes share ingredients so that you’ll use up the fresh ingredients on your grocery list by the end of the week.
So I used the book last week and chose Meal Plan 7. This is the list of meals, so you have an idea of the variety:
Skillet Chicken with Spicy Red Beans and Rice
Lemon-Herb Pork Tenderloin with Green Beans
Pork Chops with Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce
Shiitake Mushroom Frittata with Pecorino Romano
Pantry Recipe (each week has this as one of the meals, and there is a good selection to choose from in the book).
Now you may remember I’ve blogged a lot about how my husband is a very picky eater. So originally when I paged through this meal prep cookbook and looked through the recipe titles, I was a bit worried that it would simply be shelved away. America’s Test Kitchen though has notes on each recipe that tell you how to prep ahead, what you can make ahead AND notes that include substitutions (that was my saving grace y’all!).
Our favorite from this past week was the Lemon-Herb Pork Tenderloin.
This was so easy to make and the time was spot on, I had it on the table in 30 minutes. I substituted the thyme in the recipe with rosemary and it turned out just as well.
If you’ve been waffling like I have about subscribing to a delivery service, give this meal prep cookbook a try. For a fraction of the cost you have half a year’s meal planning done with everything laid out for you, and a whole year if you go back and repeat! Plus you still have to go to the grocery store or order grocery pickup anyway even with a meal prep service, so why not save money and do something ‘extra’ with it instead?!
The Ultimate-Meal Prep Cookbook by America’s Test Kitchen is available on Amazon.com in Kindle, Paperback and Spiral Bound editions. (In my opinion, splurge for the spiral bound if you choose a hard copy, it will be much easier to work with!).