If you’re a newbie to meal prepping, you may want to begin with a week’s worth of meals rather than a month’s worth. If you’re extremely intimidated by meal prep, you may even want to try a couple of days at a time. The idea of meal prepping is to take the stress out of your life – not make you feel more overwhelmed. Also, storage may be a problem if you don’t have extra freezer, pantry or refrigerator space.

Until you become familiar with the shortcuts and other aspects of pre-planning meals, it’s best to stick with the smaller increments of time. One week’s worth of meal prep can help you get organized and motivate you into trying longer amounts of meal prep time.

Prepping for a week’s worth of meals for awhile helps you prepare to tackle meal prep for an entire month. You’ll be amazed at how much time and money you save and the healthy meals you’re constantly providing for your family for simply a week at a time.

Then, when you’re ready to prepare meals for an entire month, you’ll be more mentally prepared to know what’s involved. You’ll have a pretty good idea of how much time you’ll need to devote – and how many products you’ll need to complete the task.

Good planning is at the crux of preparing for a week or a month’s worth of meals. It’s a formidable task, but very manageable if you’re used to the meal-prepping process. Decide how and where you’re going to store the meals you prepare ahead of time and make sure you have a comprehensive list of what you’re going to need.

Of course, you won’t be able to purchase some highly perishable foods such as fresh fruits and veggies too far ahead of time, but a quick stop at the store for those items is much better than taking hours of your time during the week running up and down all of the grocery aisles.

When you’re preparing for a month’s worth of meals, you can concentrate on types of meals you can freeze or keep for a longer amount of time than perishable foods. These types of meals – such as soups and stews – are easily frozen and served with fresh bread or other items you pick up at the last minute.

At least you have the main part of your meal ready to serve and you don’t have to depend on the drive through or an expensive restaurant to provide it for you. You don’t even have to fully cook your pre-planned meals.

For example, chicken breasts can be pre-marinated, then stored in the freezer until ready to use. Just don’t forget to take them out of the freezer ahead of the cooking process.

Should you do a week or a month’s worth of meal prep? It’s up to you and your needs. Experiment with a few days, then a week and then decide if preparing a month ahead of time is best.